2024 BMW M3 CS First Look: A GT3 Racer for the Whole Family
Last year, BMW celebrated its 50th anniversary in part with the new BMW M4 CSL, a lightweight, high-power special with with an iconic lineage. Now, that M3 sedan is getting some motorsport love with the 2024 BMW M3 CS, or “Competition Sport,” inspired by the German automaker’s GT3 race cars, with enough upgrades to take it right up to the limit (without going quite as far as the M4 CSL).
2024 BMW M3 CS Engine
One could argue the new M3 CS goes far enough, with a turbocharged S58 3.0-liter inline-six engine with a forged lightweight crankshaft, 3D-printed cylinder head core, and custom oil supply and cooling systems directly inspired by the power unit in the M4 GT3 race car. In the M3 CS, the engine is good for 543 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque, on par with the M4 CSL and about 40 hp more than the lesser M3 Competition sedan. It’s linked to an eight-speed automatic transmission and BMW’s xDrive rear-biased all-wheel-drive setup.
BMW also raised the max boost pressure of the two turbos up to 30.5 psi, planted the engine on special engine mounts, and fitted the dual-branch electronically-controlled exhaust with a titanium rear silencer that saves 8 pounds. The car’s 4WD Sport mode directs even more power to the rear, and the DSC can be completely disabled for pure rear-drive fun, as well.
Top speed is electronically limited to 188 mph and the car gets to 60 mph in just 3.2 seconds. M Compound brakes in red or black are available, or M Carbon ceramic brakes in red or gold. The 19- and 20-inch staggered wheels get a custom V-spoke design in either gold-bronze or matte black finish, and wear Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires at no additional cost, or conventional high-performance tires if not specified.
The onboard computer system also features M Drive Professional including Drift Analyzer and M Laptimer functionality, as well as M Traction Control with ten stages of intervention to be tuned to your tastes. An M Mode button can be configured to your specific driver and car settings.
2024 BMW M3 CS Weight Reduction
The M3 CS sports a carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) roof, hood, front splitter, air intakes, mirror caps, rear diffuser, and rear spoiler. Inside, the shift paddles, center console, interior trim strips, and heated seatbacks are also CFRP. Overall, BMW claims the lightweighting on the CS amounts to a savings of about 75 pounds compared to the M3 Competition xDrive. With a curb weight of 3,915 pounds, it is 275 heftier than the M4 CSL (3,640 pounds).
The interior is dressed with Merino leather with black and red accents and contrast stitching, an Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel, heads-up display, 14.9-inch curved iDrive 8 console display, red “CS” lettering on the seats and dashboard, and the M tricolor woven into the seatbelts.
The car will also come with an optional exclusive Frozen Solid White metallic paint finish; Brooklyn Grey metallic, Black Sapphire metallic, or Signal Green are also available. Keep in mind that the contour lines of that massive grille are finished in a red accents, and the DRLs will be motorsport-inspired yellow. The idea is that the M3 CS customer only has to choose an exterior color, wheel color, which tires, brakes, and which color caliper.
Standard equipment includes: M Sport Differential, Adaptive M Suspension, Comfort Access keyless entry, Dual Zone automatic climate control, Harman Kardon Surround Sound System, M front strut brace, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, Active Blind Spot Detection, Frontal Collision Warning with City Collision Mitigation, and Lane Departure Warning. Below is a chart of the M3 CS’s information provided by BMW.
|2024 BMW M3 CS Specifications|
|No. of doors/seats||4 / 5|
|Length / Width / Height (in)||188.8 / 75.5 / 56.6|
|Track, front / rear (in)||63.9 / 63.2|
|Ground clearance (in)||4.8|
|Turning circle (ft)||41.3|
|Fuel tank capacity (gal)||15.6|
|Engine oil capacity (qts)||7.4|
|Curb weight (lbs)||3,915|
|Luggage capacity (cu ft)||16.9|
|Config. / no. cylinders / valves||Inline / 6 / 24|
|Engine technology||M TwinPower Turbo technology with two mono-scroll turbochargers, indirect charge air cooling, high precision injection, VALVETRONIC fully variable valve control and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing|
|Stroke / bore (mm)||90.0 / 84.0|
|Compression ratio (:1)||9.3|
|Max output (hp @ rpm)||543 @ 6,250-7,200|
|Max torque (lb-ft @ rpm)||479 @ 2,750-5,950|
|Driving Dynamics and Safety|
|Suspension, front||Adaptive M suspension with double-joint spring strut axle in lightweight aluminum construction, M-specific kinematics and elastokinematics|
|Suspension, rear||Adaptive M suspension with five-link axle in lightweight aluminum / steel construction, rear-axle subframe with rigid bolted connection to the body, M-specific elastokinematics|
|Brakes, front||M Compound brakes, vented, with six-piston fixed calipers|
|Brakes, rear||M Compound brakes, vented, with single-piston floating calipers|
|Driving stability systems||DSC including ABS, ASC, and M Dynamic Mode (MDM), can be switched off, integrated wheel slip limitation, CBC (Cornering Brake Control), DBC (Dynamic Brake Control), Dry Braking function, Start-Off Assistant, Active M Differential|
|Safety equipment||Airbags for driver and passenger, side airbags for driver and passenger, head airbags, three-point inertia reel seatbelts, belt tensioner and belt force limiter, crash sensors, tire pressure indicator|
|Steering||Electric Power Steering (EPS) with M-specific Servotronic function and variable sport ratio|
|Steering ratio overall (:1)||14.6|
|Tires front / rear||275/35ZR19 100Y XL / 285/30ZR20 99Y XL|
|Rims, front / rear (in)||9.5J x 19 forged light alloy / 10.5J x 20 forged light alloy|
|Type||8-speed M STEPTRONIC transmission with Drivelogic|
|Power to weight (lbs/hp)||7.2|
|Output per liter (hp)||181|
|Acceleration 0-60 mph (sec)||3.2|
|Top Speed (mph)||188|
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