BMW has unveiled the limited edition 2018 M3 CS as the latest development of its mid-size performance hero.
Following in the footsteps of the M4 CS coupe the new four-door M3 CS trims down thanks to a lightweighting program including carbon fibre used in the roof, bonnet, front splitter and rear diffuser.
Power is also kept at M4 CS levels with 338kW and 600Nm from a twin-turbo straight-six engine, marking an extra 7kW and 50Nm compared to the current M3 Competition. BMW quote a 0-100 km/h sprint of 3.9 seconds making the CS the fastest accelerating M3 yet.
Australian customers will have an opportunity to get their hands on the M4 CS from March 2018, but production will be strictly limited with just 1200 units set to offered around the world.
Despite the focus on performance, features such as BMW’s Professional navigation system, climate control air conditioning, a Harman Kardon sound system and the rear seats are retained as standard. Buyers can however option the new four door with a series of unique Alcantara and leather accents.
Other interior highlights lightweight M sport seats and sport steering wheel from the M3 Competition Package. Borrowing a cue from the new M5, there’s also a new red starter button.
At 1585kg, BMW M claims a 10kg reduction over the standard M3. Although not a significant reduction, insiders suggest it is sufficient to lower the M3 CS’s crucial centre of gravity below that of the already heavily focused M3 Competition Package.
Power is channeled through a standard seven-speed dual clutch gearbox and electronically controlled M-differential to the rear wheels.
Along with the bump in power and torque, the new engine also receives a reworked sports exhaust featuring what BMW M describes as a CS specific exhaust note.
The M3 CS rides on a specially tuned version of the M3 Competition Package’s suspension. It is combined with standard 19-inch front and 20-inch rear wheels shod with 265/35 and 285/30 Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres respectively.
In line with the M3 Competition Package, the M3 CS also employs BMW M’s compound brake package featuring four pot calipers up front and two pot calipers at the rear.
Australian pricing is yet to be announced, though BMW M insiders suggest the last of the fifth-generation M3 models will attract a hefty premium over the M3 Competition Package.
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