Is it a good idea to tune a car as rare as the BMW M5 CS?
Manhart Performance has turned up the wick on the BMW M5 CS, giving the performance sedan a strong surge in the horsepower and torque departments.
The standard vehicle, already a powerful brute, develops 627 horsepower and 553 lb-ft of torque. That wasn't good enough for the German tuner, which has boosted outputs to 777 hp and 689 lb-ft. To put that into perspective, that's more muscle than a Lamborghini Aventador S or a Porsche 911 Turbo S.
So, how does Manhart achieve these eye-widening numbers? Firstly, the BMW specialists fit the 4.4-liter S63 V8 with a Manhart carbon fiber air intake and an MHtronik auxiliary control unit. The exhaust system is replaced by Manhart's stainless steel setup with four custom tailpipes for a throatier sound.
Already a serious canyon carver, Manhart has blessed the Bimmer with even more cornering prowess, thanks to a Manhart Variant 4 coilover suspension by KW Suspensions. This, says the tuner, provides improved handling and gives the car a lowered stance and a more menacing look.
Aside from the 21-inch Manhart ten-spoke wheels, the usually exuberant company has kept things surprisingly subtle. The signature racing stripes can be seen flowing over the roof and on the sides of the vehicle, but in a demure silver as opposed to the usual gold.
BMW's blue and white roundel has made way for Manhart's logo, while the "M5 CS" nomenclature has made way for the vehicle's new model name: MH5 GTR. With just 1,000 or so CS units ever made, we're guessing Manhart didn't want to mess with a masterpiece too much.
The same can be said inside, where the typically austere BMW cabin hasn't been fiddled with too much. The lightweight carbon fiber front seats remain and, in this model, have been trimmed in attractive red leather. Aside from Manhart badging on the steering wheel and the MH5 GTR badging on the trim inlays, the high-performance sedan is just as it left the factory.
Manhart says this particular vehicle has not received any transmission or braking system upgrades but notes that a package is available for customers who want even more from their cars. We can't imagine many people would be willing to tamper with a future collector's item. Still, there are always a handful of people who aren't satisfied with the standard vehicle's abilities.
Initially a one-off, it seems the company is hoping more M5 CS owners will see the benefits of this package. But perhaps they'll be swayed by G-Power's ridiculously powerful G5M CS Bi-Turbo. With up to 887 hp and 774 lb-ft up for grabs, it's a mighty machine that is matched only by hypercars for its sheer lunacy.
Coming across an M5 CS will prove difficult, so those in the market for BMW's finest performance sedan will be pleased to know this very example is currently for sale. As for what it costs, we're not sure. But with some standard examples selling for around $190,000, we expect this Manhart-fettled example to be priced closer to $250,000.
If, however, it's a bit extreme for your tastes, you could always purchase the M3-based MH3 GTR, with a more sensible 641 hp.