2023 BMW M4 CSL revealed

William StopfordCarExpert
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The BMW M4 CSL is not only lighter and faster than the regular M4, it’s set a record for the Bavarian brand.

The CSL has recorded the fastest lap times ever for a series-produced BMW on the Nürburgring Nordschleife with an official time of 7m 20.207s, or 7m 15.677s on the version of the track traditionally used for comparison purposes.

BMW is making just 1000 units of the M4 CSL, with production beginning in July. Local availability has yet to be confirmed.

The rear-wheel drive M4 CSL has a 0-100km/h time of 3.7 seconds, reduced by 0.2 seconds compared to the rear-wheel drive M4 Competition but 0.2 seconds slower than the all-wheel drive M4 Competition.

The CSL does the 0-200km/h sprint in 10.7 seconds.

An uprated twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre inline six-cylinder engine under the bonnet produces 405kW at 6250rpm and 650Nm between 2750 and 5950rpm, and is mated with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Peak torque is unchanged, though power is up by 30kW over the M4 Competition.

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The M4 CSL’s engine features M TwinPower Turbo technology found in the M4 GT3 racing car, with maximum charge pressure up from 1.7 bar to 2.1 bar.

The M4 CSL has been tuned to be more rigid and more ready for track work, right down to a special track tune for the traction control.

New front-end strut braces help increase rigidity, the geometry of the cast aluminium elements between the spring strut towers and the front end has been adapted, and there are unique engine mounts.

There are also unique camber settings, dampers, auxiliary springs and anti-roll bars, while the CSL sits 8mm lower than the Competition.

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DIN kerb weight has been cut by 100kg to 1625kg, with a power-to-weight ratio of 4.01kg/kW.

Weight savings include the deletion of the rear seats and seat belts, cutting 21kg.

The use of extra-lightweight M Carbon ceramic brakes as well as special light-alloy wheels, springs and struts cut another 21kg, while reducing the soundproofing and using ultra-lightweight sound insulation slashed another 15kg.

Greater use of carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic reduced weight by another 11kg, with the material used for the roof, bonnet, boot lid and centre console.

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The lightweight measures continue with a titanium rear silencer, reducing the weight of the exhaust system by 4kg; the exhaust also features electrically-controlled flaps, and promises an “emotionally-engaging” note.

Changes to the grille, lights, floor mats and climate control shave another 4kg.

Inside, the manually-adjustable M Carbon full bucket seats are 24kg lighter than the M4 Competition’s standard seats, and feature a fixed backrest angle.

The seats can be fitted with a six-point belt system and feature detachable head restraints. Want to change the seat height? You’ll need to take your car to a workshop.

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Merino leather upholstery is standard, along with an Alcantara steering wheel and plenty of carbon-fibre trim.

There are two helmet storage units in the rear, too.

The M4 CSL continues to use a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system, while standard safety equipment includes automatic climate control (dual-zone optional), forward collision warning and lane departure warning.

BMW’s Driving Assistant and Parking Assistant systems are optional.

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External changes include available BMW Laserlight headlights with yellow elements, à la the M5 CS. Down back, there are unique LED tail lights with laser technology that feature glass covers with intricate light threads.

The M4 CSL rides forged light-alloy wheels, measuring 19 inches up front and 20 inches in the rear, and is finished in Frozen Brooklyn Grey metallic as standard.

You can also opt for Alpine White solid or Sapphire Black metallic finishes, and there are plenty of carbon-fibre and red accents.

It may not be the only special M4 released this year, with the CSL rumoured to be joined by a special GT/H model that’ll feature a manual transmission.

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Originally published as 2023 BMW M4 CSL revealed

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