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Turns out, you can daily drive a sports car. Well, at least you can daily drive a Carbon Schwartz Metallic 2004 BMW M3. Now, I’m here to report that daily sports car life is a possibility, and may not require the litany of sacrifices it once did, with some exceptions. Moreover, you used to have to be a total masochist to drive anything remotely sporty daily. Now, advances in modern tech and suspension have made it more than possible to daily drive a sports car. I promise.

Sacrifices are still (somewhat) necessary to daily drive a sports car

A silver 2002 M3 coupe shot from the front
2002 BMW M3 Coupe | National Motor Museum via Getty Images

However, dear reader, I’m not going to sit here and tell you that it’s all sunshine and roses. Sports cars can often be unreliable. My new-to-me M3 will certainly require more attention than a new Honda Civic. Of course, this is to say nothing of practicality. For ages, the middle ground in the sporty vs. practical argument has been sports sedans or hot hatches. Argaubly, this is still true.

For example, I was able to fit my mountain bike, two backpacks, and a litany of spare parts in my old VW GTI. It would be pointless to try the same thing in my BMW. The fact of the matter is, it’s just way smaller than my GTI, to say nothing of ground clearance. Now, I have to take both wheels off my bike. Despite this, I can carry 99% of the same things 99% of the time in my M3. Size of my GTI was really only useful when moving a truly massive amount of stuff. So, if that’s your life, maybe reconsider your desire to daily drive a sports car.

It’s all about the lifestyle

Black and blue Carbon Schwartz Metallic paint on a BMW M3, with the badge pictured on the hood
Carbon Schwartz Metallic paint on my M3 | Chase Bierenkoven

Your own personal needs are paramount if you’re sitting in the position I was a few months back. Maybe you work from home like I do, and don’t need to rely on a vehicle to get to work. If that’s the case, let ‘er rip. I’m more than fortunate enough to enjoy a lifestyle where I can make having an M3 as a daily driver work for me. Ultimately, that’s what it comes down to: does the sports car lifesyle fit into your lifestyle?

Menial cargo sacrifices and ride height aside, I’m happy to report a mid-size sports car is perfectly feasible to drive daily. Friends (albiet the ones under 6’3″) fit in the back, and so do all the things I take with me on a day out. Factory suspension in the E46 M3 can be a little harsh, but mine has modern suspension that dramatically improves ride and handling.

Can it be right for you?

The front 3/4 angle of a 2002 M3 coupe
2002 BMW M3 Coupe | National Motor Museum via Getty Images

So, what have we learned? There’s some ifs, ands, and buts, but it can be done. You really can daily drive a sports car if you want to. And that’s what it comes down to in the end. You’ve got to want it. Real bad. More importantly, you’ve got to understand what you’re getting out of the deal, and if you want that. If a fun, good-looking car is what you think of when you go to bed at night, then make those small sacrifices. As the old saying goes: Life is too short to drive boring cars.


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