For the most committed.
For many, BMW fans or otherwise, the M3 is perhaps the greatest expression of performance in a compact executive saloon. With a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre straight six in the latest iteration, the current M3 offers a truly mesmerising blend of driving thrills and day-to-day usability, and most certainly reminds drivers just why BMW’s set the pace in this segment for a long time.
Today, BMW Australia announced the impending arrival of the no-compromise M3 CS, the ultimate iteration of the modern-day M3, and the most powerful M3 to ever be offered for sale.
“The combination of the M4 CS’s drivetrain into the M3’s pumped-up saloon body makes the M3 CS highly desirable. Even better, we’ve been able to follow up from the M4 CS’s strong price position. Available from June, [the M3 CS will be] priced from $179,990.” — Marc Werner, CEO, BMW Group Australia
Sporting a price premium of about $33k over the already-impressive M3 competition, the most notable upgrade to the M3 CS comes under the bonnet. The 3.0-litre straight-six biturbo mill now makes 338kW and 600Nm, about 7kW/50Nm more than the Competition model. Power is sent to the rear wheel exclusively via a 7-speed double-clutch auto box.
The century sprint is dispatched in 3.9-seconds, marking a significant (cough) 0.1-second improvement over the M3 and M3 Competition.
Notable exterior points include 19-inch front and 20-inch rear forged alloy wheels, wrapped in high-performance Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 rubbers (though you can option for Super Sport tyres instead if you’re buying one of these as a toy). You’ll find a ton of carbon-fibre bits dotted around the place (front splitter, bonnet, roof, rear diffuser and gurney flap, to name a few).
You’ll also find smart LED headlights with smoked LED taillights (BMW calls them ‘Black Line’), four tailpipes, adaptive M-suspension that’s been optimised for the M3, calibrations to the selectable drive-modes, an active diff, and a heads-up display that’s been tailored for application here.
You’ll also be treated to full-leather upholstery, with a black/silver colour combination, and find trim panels wrapped in lightweight Alcantara as you hit speeds of up to 280km/h. There’s also a full suite of parking sensors, a 12-speaker audio system (not that you’ll ever need that with a straight-6 up front), an 8.8-inch iDrive infotainment system, cruise control, BMW Connected+ and BMW ConnectedDrive Services.
If you’re a bit bonkers, you can take a poke round the options list, which is (mercifully) short for the M3 CS (they say it’s because of the “performance-focused nature” of the model). However, BMW is still willing to relieve you of your cash for things like carbon-ceramic brakes (unnecessary really, unless you envision yourself screaming round a track often), a rear roller sunblind, Apple CarPlay (of course it’s an option), and TV functionality for the infotainment system (why the hell you would need this, we’re not sure).
With just 1,200 of these cars available globally, we expect the Australian allocation of the M3 CS to be sold out rather quickly, so don’t waste any time securing yours at your nearest BMW dealership. On the off chance that they’re all snapped up by the time you get there, we’d wager that you won’t be left bored by the less-expensive M3 Competition ($146,900) or the even-more-affordable M3 Pure ($129,900).