The fabled performance brand turns 50 next year.
If you're a BMW fanatic, three specific letters mean more to you than those you see on the brand's logo. While the M2 CS is special, and the old M4 GTS was pretty mean too, what you're really lusting after is a Bimmer with the CSL name on the trunk. The last time that designation was used, it was on the E46, back when engines truly had character and cars weren't built for Instagram celebs. We've been teased with the return of the famous nomenclature for years now and BMW even flirted with a 3.0 CSL Hommage concept back in 2015 - pictured below - but during an online roundtable event, Hagen Franke, product manager for the new M3 and M4, hinted that this return could be imminent.
Responding to South African publication CARmag.co.za, Franke said, "There seems to be room for giving customers kind of half of that feeling for road-legal cars." Now before you get upset and think that this means nothing, Martin Schleypen, spokesperson for BMW M, elaborated further: "Next year, in 2022, BMW M turns fifty years old. And maybe there will be one or the other birthday present we will give to you or ourselves." Of course, this could also mean that BMW could do no more than unveil a one-of-one CSL concept, but the incessant questioning in this line surely proves to the bean-counters at BMW M that a CSL would be more than well-received. In fact, considering how long it's taken for BMW to possibly revive the moniker, the car would certainly become an instant classic.
If it does happen, the Coupe Sport Lightweight treatment will almost certainly be applied to the G82 M4 and not the M3. Why? Well, despite whatever the stunning M5 CS may try to convince you of, lightweight performance is best achieved and enhanced when you start off with a lighter car in the first place. At this stage, there's not much point to speculating about a car that BMW may still never make, but hopefully, you'll get two seats up front, a manual gearbox in the middle, and drive to the rear wheels. Expect highly limited numbers and conversely exorbitant pricing.