This will be the most hardcore BMW M8 yet.
The M8 may not have been as popular as BMW hoped, but this hasn't stopped the Bavarian automaker from cooking up a more hardcore variant of the high-performance grand tourer. Last year, BMW was caught testing a peculiar 8 Series prototype with side air intakes replacing the rear windows and different side sills. There was speculation that it could be a test mule for a new mid-engine sports car.
Not long after BMW denied these rumors, another M8 prototype was spotted with less camouflage, sparking rumors that a new hardcore CSL version is in development.
A few months later, our spies have spotted another BMW M8 CSL prototype with even more design details on display revealing its aggressive aero.
Compared to our last sighting, the prototype is fitted with a new hood featuring prominent air outlets. The headlights have also been updated with red daytime running lights. Red accents are also applied to the grille and air outlets on the front fenders. At the front, the prototype features a prominent carbon fiber spoiler lip and a redesigned bumper, while the back is dominated by a large rear wing. BMW has applied some camouflage around the exhaust pipes to cover up the aggressive diffuser.
We expect modifications like removing the rear seats and adding lightweight glass will make the CSL significantly lighter than the regular M8.
Under the hood, the M8 CSL is expected to be powered by a 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine and electric motors producing a combined 700 horsepower. Rumors have claimed the hardcore M8 CSL will debut next year to coincide with the 50th anniversary of BMW M. However, BMW hasn't confirmed if a CSL version of the M8 is in development, so BMW could be using this prototype test performance parts or a new powertrain for a new halo performance car that could be called the M9 judging from recently filed trademarks.