Looking for a new vehicle to take to track day? BMW answers the demand for a track-focused car with the 2023 M4 CSL (which is short for Competition Sports Lightweight). This special edition weighs a solid 240 pounds less than the standard M4, so it is more aerodynamic and quicker on its feet. Featuring a lowered stance, carbon brakes, a more performance-oriented suspension tuning, and high-performance tires, the M4 CSL came to play.
The catch? BMW is only making 1,000 units to be sold worldwide. Oh, and it comes at a fairly steep price with a starting MSRP of $140,895. This vehicle certainly will not be for everyone, but it might be the one you’re looking for if you value agility and power.
A Turbo Boost
While the CSL has the twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline-six engine that comes under the M4 Competition’s hood, it gets a 24 percent turbo boost up to 30.5 psi. Its dual-circuit cooling system makes it track-friendly, giving it 543 horsepower – 40 hp above what the Competition offers. It still comes with an eight-speed automatic transmission with the Competition’s final drive ratio and internal ratios.
What makes the CSL different is that the transmission and engine mounts are stiffened, and the shift points are optimized for more power. The vehicle’s power delivery should show less windup but have a little more cabin vibration.
240 Pounds Lighter
With 240 pounds less than the M4 Competition, the M4 CSL is more aerodynamic. It has a curb weight of 3,640 pounds, which makes it quicker to get up and moving than the M4 Competition. BMW tells us that the M4 CSL should get from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 3.6 seconds, which is /2 seconds faster than the Competition. However, it is entirely possible that the CSL could best these estimates.
A Minimized Design
To be more lightweight, the CSL does away with the rear seats and seatbelts, which shaves 46 pounds off the curb weight. The front bucket seats are a one-piece carbon design that saves the vehicle another 53 pounds. However, if you get the available carbon seats, you add 32 pounds back on. The lightweight sound insulation saves 33 pounds, and the carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic details save 9 pounds. The titanium silencer at the end of the exhaust shaves another 9 pounds off, meaning the engine will have a louder roar.
Performance Wheels and Tires
The M4 CSL is fitted with high-performance tires that come as an option on the Competition. The CSL’s wheels are mounted on special forged alloys that have slimmed-down spokes meant to save even more weight.
Another standard lightweight feature is the carbon-ceramic brakes that come as options for other M4 variants.
A Lowered Suspension
The CSL’s suspension sits 0.3 inches lower than the M4 Competition and is recalibrated using adaptive damper valving, special springs, unique stabilizer bar tuning, and software. There are moonball joints placed into the links of the rear suspension, lending more track precision than the usual rubber bushings. Ideally, this will lead to sharper handling capabilities.
If you haven’t laid claim to one of the 1,000 units BMW has made, then there is no time like the present. The 2023 BMW M4 CSL promises a fun-filled day at the track for anyone who dares to drive it.