For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Maserati Ghibli have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW M3 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.
For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Maserati Ghibli are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW M3 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.
The Ghibli offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The M3 doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.
Both the Ghibli and the M3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.
The Ghibli has 5.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the M3 (21.1 vs. 15.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
The Ghibli has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The M3 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.
The Ghibli’s optional 285/30R21 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 30 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the M3’s optional 35 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Ghibli offers optional 21-inch wheels. The M3’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.
Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the Ghibli can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The M3 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Ghibli’s wheelbase is 7.3 inches longer than on the M3 (118 inches vs. 110.7 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Ghibli is 2.2 inches wider in the front and 2 inches wider in the rear than on the M3.
For better maneuverability, the Ghibli’s turning circle is 1.6 feet tighter than the M3’s (38.4 feet vs. 40 feet).
The design of the Maserati Ghibli amounts to more than styling. The Ghibli has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .31 Cd. That is lower than the M3 (.34) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Ghibli get better fuel mileage.
Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the Ghibli is rated a Large car by the EPA, while the M3 is rated a Compact.
The Ghibli has 12 cubic feet more passenger volume than the M3 (108 vs. 96).
The Ghibli has 2.7 inches more front shoulder room, 1.1 inches more rear headroom and 1.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the M3.
The Ghibli has a much larger trunk than the M3 (17.6 vs. 13 cubic feet).
The Ghibli offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The M3 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
The Ghibli’s optional easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The M3 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The Ghibli’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The M3 does not have an oil pressure gauge.
The Ghibli’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The M3’s passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.
The Ghibli’s optional air conditioned front seats cool the driver and front passenger and help take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The M3 doesn’t offer air conditioned front seats.