BMW has officially taken the wraps off the new limited-run M3 CS sedan, but very few units are destined for South Africa.
Global production is expected to be limited to around 1 200 units, with just 15 examples set aside for SA (compared to around 60 units of the M4 CS). The M3 CS will be available locally from May 2018, although pricing has yet to be confirmed.
So, what makes the M3 CS sedan special? Well, the new model shares much with its M4 CS coupé sibling, including a slight bump in power and torque over the M3 with Competition Package (331 kW and 550 N.m). That means the familiar 3,0-litre turbocharged inline-six makes 338 kW and 600 N.m in M3 CS guise, which is enough for a claimed zero to 100 km/h time of 3,9 seconds (one-tenth faster than the Competition Package model). The top speed, meanwhile, comes in at 280 km/h.
Drive is sent to the rear wheels via the Munich-based brand’s seven-speed M DCT, while BMW says the sports exhaust system has been “specially tuned” for use on the M3 CS. The suspension set-up, meanwhile, “largely mirrors” that of the M3 with Competition Package, with adaptive suspension fitted as standard.
The M3 CS boasts special lightweight alloys, wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres (265/35 R19 up front and 285/30 R20 at the rear). If these semi-slick, road-legal cup tyres aren’t to your fancy, BMW says you can order your M3 CS with Michelin Sport road tyres instead.
Like the M4 CS, this new model features a Gurney spoiler lip on the boot lid, although BMW says this one has been “designed specifically” for the M3 CS. There’s also a front splitter and a rear diffuser fashioned from carbon fibre-reinforced plastic.
The bonnet and roof are also made from this lightweight material, while you’ll find plenty of two-tone leather and Alcantara inside, along with a new red start/stop button. Interestingly, though, the M3 CS retains its interior door handles (and door panel trim) rather than adopting the lightweight pull hoops used by the M4 CS.