I've driven e36s forever and I daily drove a c5 corvette for three years prior to buying the m3. It just really doesn't satisfy me, I should've bought an e36 M3 as I planned but an amazing deal popped up on this one and I impulsively jumped on it.
I just can't get over how awful the s54 sounds. Sure it's got plenty of power, but the only engines I've heard make more noise when running properly are diesels and e30's. And the exhaust note is disappointing. I've had Dixis and Active Autowerke exhausts on the car and even with both the car still sounds like crap to say the least.
I guess it's all personal tastes and opinion, but I think the e36 m3 is a much better car all around.