BMW M CEO teases 50th anniversary ‘CSL’

The BMW birthday celebrations are just getting started!

By Matt Bird / Tuesday, 28 June 2022 / Loading comments

And you thought the M3 Touring was something special. Fresh from being the featured brand at the weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed, BMW M has continued the 50th birthday party with a new concept car. It’s been revealed, interestingly, on M CEO Franciscus van Meel’s Instagram, and appears to be a homage to the 1973 3.0 CSL, the very first M car. Which would be fitting.

Of course, this isn’t the first time BMW has hinted at such a creation. There have been ‘Hommage’ concept cars stretching years, with both a 3.0 CSL Hommage and 3.0 CSL Hommage R shown within a few months of each other back in 2015. There’s been some desire and no little intent to celebrate the original, it seems – a 50th anniversary presents the perfect opportunity.

From what can be seen from the Insta post, this new CSL will be M4 based, because even the funky disguise can’t fully hide the fact it’s a pretty chunky monkey. But there’s plenty to be encouraged by, not least the smaller grilles up front, double rear spoiler (one roof, one boot) like the 1973 car and a little sticker that says ‘6MT FTW’.

Which, if we still understand acronyms, means this car will have a six-speed manual gearbox, the transmission choice conspicuously lacking from the M4 CSL – marvellous. A homage to the 3.0 CSL wouldn’t be right with anything but a manual, would it?

There’s more, too. Note how the rear arches are beefed up to almost meet the spoiler – again a nod to the 3.0 – and that the front end is broadened to match, with some real racer-style intakes. It’s incredibly low, too, right down to the height of van Meel’s Pumas, implying a bodykit just as dramatic up front as the double decker rear spoiler. Even if it comes out flat grey, this BMW promises to be attention grabbing. Hopefully, this time, for all the right reasons.

There’s no more concrete info for the moment, though ‘I like it rare’ on the comic book bonnet suggests there won’t be many of this 3.0 CSL Hommage. We’d bet on less than 1,000, as that’s the number of CSLs being produced. Might it be just 50, to mark the half century? Or might it be 500, because there’s 500hp mated to that six speed manual in this very, very intriguing CSL homage? We’ll keep you posted…

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