BMW builds a better M3

Only 1,200 units will be available worldwide, with half in North America

Published: November 7, 2017, 9:30 PM
Updated: November 21, 2021, 3:06 PM


BMW is making a better M3, the M3 CS — a special edition sedan equipped with a more powerful 3.0-litre turbocharged inline 6-cylinder engine, lightweight aerodynamic exterior, and an exclusive interior. Worldwide production is limited to 1,200 units and deliveries are expected to start in spring 2018.

Extensive use of carbon fibre (front splitter, roof, decklid spoiler and rear diffuser) means a weight savings of about 50 kg (making it about 25% lighter than the regular M3), which when combined with the 28-hp (now 453) and 37 lb-ft (up to 443) boosts and controlled by a 7-speed dual clutch paddle-shift automatic, means the car is quicker (0-100 km/h in about four seconds) and faster (top speed of 280 km/h). And, it does it with a unique exhaust note from the M Sports exhaust.

The resultant lowering of the center of gravity combined with Dynamic Stability Control and enhancements in the Adaptive M suspension (driver controlled between Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus) and Active M rear differential, also means a more predictable and satisfying handling experience.

The suspension setup is double-joint front struts and rear 5-link, with wheel-location components made from forged aluminum, and it rides on forged light alloy wheels (19-inch front; 20-inch rear) based on the competition German Touring Car M4s.

Attractive and efficient BMW M compound brakes (optionally ceramic) bring the car under control surely and quickly.

The minimalist (well, more minimal than the standard M3) leather-clad interior features the first M3 application of a push-start ignition and lightweight M sports seats, along with grippy Alcantara on the steering wheel and in the console between the seats. However, luxuries such as climate control and a Harman Kardon surround sound system are still included.

Roughly half of the worldwide production will be making its way to North America, with prices to be set closer to launch. Colour choices are limited to Alpine White (standard), San Marino Blue Metallic, Lime Rock Grey Metallic, Frozen Dark Blue II Metallic and Black Sapphire Metallic. The interior is 2-tone Silverstone/Black, with the M symbol prominently displayed throughout (even on seatbelts).