Looking appropriately cool in its Frozen Silver exterior finish, the 2012 BMW M3 Competition Edition soon will be heading to America, albeit in very limited numbers. Only 40 of these exclusive upgrades will be on offer here, to help commemorate the 40th anniversary of the automaker's fabled "M" performance division and the role that the M3, in particular, has played in reinforcing BMW's well-justified claim to being the Ultimate Driving Machine. Unlike previous M3 special editions, each of these Competition-spec vehicles will be allocated, one each to the first 40 BMW dealers who opt to become M Certified Centers.

Each of the new 2012 BMW M3 Competition Edition models will be identical with respect to their cosmetic and mechanical makeup. To complement their satin-metallic Frozen Silver finish, the cars will feature black hood intakes and dark chrome exterior trim set off by black 19-inch M3 GTS alloy wheels. The performance-themed interior is highlighted by Black Extended Novillo Leather with unique palladium silver accents, an Alcantara-covered multi-function M steering wheel, carbon-fiber dash and console trim bits and a bevy of M3 checkered flag logos.

No changes were made to the M3's standard 414-horsepower/4.0-liter V8 engine, which is backed by BMW's primo seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT), a combo that will allow Competition Edition models to blitz from 0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds. However, handling gets sharpened courtesy of the Competition Package that drops ride height by 10mm in addition to netting the wider-offset M3 GTS rims as well as enhanced mapping on its standard Electronic Damping Control coupled with higher-threshold programming for the M Dynamic Mode.

Rounding out the lengthy roast of standards on the 2012 BMW M3 Competition Edition's are both the Cold Weather Package and the Premium Package. Pricing for this super-exclusive coupe is $81,600 - roughly $20,000 beyond a standard 2012 BMW M3 Coupe.

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