I am a tech head, and I do have a thing for cars. I drive a pretty sweet Honda S2000, and I have ridden performance motorcycles for most of my life. So I know a thing or two about a well running car.
This morning, while walking my dogs, I walked by a house where someone was leaving for work. He gets into a 2010 BMW M3. Just about every M3 I have ever been near or in is a supremely functioning machine. Fast, functional, and about as well tuned as you will fine. The perfectly balanced inline 6 cylinder, mated to a 5 or 6 speed Getrag transmission equals a butter smooth ride, and more than a little “go”.
This car however ran ratty. It would barely idle (usually an indication of someone screwing with the program of the ECU), and it had a loud exhaust. Nothing wrong with increasing the breathing of the engine, but on something as highly tuned as an M3, you need to balance intake and exhaust modifications to keep the fine balance.
Alas, this example was poorly executed. It ran about as rough as a 396CI 1969 Ford Mustang fastback. Barely idled, and popped and backfired a lot as he (barely) got it away from the curb.
Sad really. At least it wasn’t an automatic…