M. At BMW, it stands for performance. We identify M cars with big power, agile dynamics, and aggressive European styling. But how did they get that way? The BMW M3 is the car that started it all, and a couple weeks ago we saw how BMW developed the first-generation M3.

Well, now BMW has released the second installment in a video series that is promised to cover all five generations of the M3.

The video featured here covers the second-generation M3, the legendary E36, which ran from 1992 to 1999. In it we learn that BMW turned its focus from pure competition in the first generation to a combination of track readiness and street comfort. We also learn that the E36 was the first car to feature BMW's VANOS variable camshaft system and sequential M gearbox. VANOS, in particular, was instrumental in giving the car the qualities of both a race car and a comfortable daily cruiser.  

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Of course, there is much more to learn about the E36 M3 in this video, as well as some cool images to see of a great car ripping up the road and a warehouse.

The video was done for an international market and not all of the information applies to the United States. However, there is some cool stuff here, and perhaps what you learn will inspire you to do some more research on your own...or to go out and buy a used E36 M3.


See more videos on our YouTube sites: The Car Connection, Motor Authority, and Green Car Reports.