It can be a little hard to accept that the F80 is now approaching its 4th year in production and a little more so to realise that the 3 Series is going on its 7th, but despite this both are still firmly embedded as leaders in their own class.
The internet is already awash with pictures and shaky video footage of the all-new BMW 3 Series and M3 snaking their way around various test locations, most notably at the Nurburgring. We know that both cars are soon to replace the outgoing F30 and F80, respectively, which has led the automaker to release a profuse number of images on the most focused and hardcore of their current generation of M3: the Competition Sport, or CS.
The car also foreshadows the return of the CSL moniker from its last appearance on the E46 M3, which is due to denote the hardcore version of the next-ge)neration M cars, replacing the badge of the track-focused GTS. As such, we suspect an M4 CSL to be a much likelier candidate than an M3 CSL.
This M3 CS, though, takes the F80 recipe to some extremes while keeping the overall car as daily drivable as possible. As hardcore as it wants to be perceived as with its more aggressive exterior, vents in its carbon fibre bonnet, and S55 3.0-litre twin-turbo engine uprated to 343kW and 600Nm, the car is still a four-door sedan with practicality levels to match a standard 3 Series.
Blind yourself to the splashes of Alcantara and you’ll notice its leather seats, climate control, and rear ventilation. Ironically, leaving out the L in CSL retains liveability. Extra goodies that comes along with the CS are mostly related to its suspension and weight saving material, such as its double-joint spring strut front axle, five-link rear axle, unique calibrations for its M Adaptive Dampers, and standard set of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres.
The limited edition M3 CLS will be offered in just a few exterior shades, including the San Marino Blue Metallic and Lime Rock Grey Metallic pictured here, but also Frozen Dark Blue II Metallic, Alpine White, and Black Sapphire Metallic.
Ever since BMW announced the car back in January, enthusiasts have been filling up those order books. It’s not know at the moment if all 1,200 units have already been spoken for, so there might be time yet. Locally, it’s priced at $179,990.