A lighter, more powerful version of the legendary BMW M3 is ready to set pulses racing in the UK. First unveiled at this year’s Geneva Motor Show in March, the new M3 CSL is even quicker and more responsive than its thoroughbred cousin, promising driving purists the most authentic motor sport experience in a production car.
A limited run will be built in Munich between June and December this year. Five hundred are destined for the UK and dealer order books are already full. First deliveries of the car, which is priced at £58,455 on-the-road, will begin in August.
In creating the M3 CSL, which stands for Coupe, Sport and Lightweight, engineers at BMW’s M division succeeded in stripping 110 kg from the M3. The result is a car that benefits from an impressive power to weight ratio of just 3.85 kg/bhp and accelerates from 0-62 in 4.9 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph, but can be de-limited for holders of a racing licence.
But the M3 CSL, which is based on a concept first shown at Frankfurt in 2001, is not just about lighter materials. Designers were tasked with creating a car true to BMW’s motor sport heritage, right down to the last component. And by engineering a range of power and handling improvements, BMW has created a vehicle capable of breaking the eight minute lap time at the famous Nurburgring, North Circuit in Germany.