BMW 3.0 CSL Officially Unveiled As An Enthusiast's Dream Car

BMW just dropped what it claims is the ultimate M-series experience to date. The BMW 3.0 CSL will be a tightly limited run built from the ground up to be a purist's dream — the ultimate expression of what a tuned-up BMW roadster should be. We at SlashGear are unshy about our love for the M-series. The combination of classic straight-six performance, an old-school manual gearbox, and occasionally off-beat styling choices just speaks to our car-geek souls.

By all appearances, the CSL will have no trouble living up to that standard. Released to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the CSL Racer taking the flag at the 1973 European Touring Car Championship (via BMW), the 3.0 CSL is meant to sum up all the things that make BMW roadsters wonderful. Whether it can deliver that experience will remain an open question, unless and until, we get our hands on one, but at the very least, stand by while we walk you through the details.

Engineering with no compromises

Alas, we might not get a chance for a comprehensive review of the CSL. The new roadster will be the most exclusive M-series to date: Only 50 models are slated for construction.

What those 50 lucky customers will get is a pure M-series roadster with no compromises on efficiency, aesthetics or practical value. The CSL — that's "Coupe, Sport, Lichtbau" or "Coupe, Sport, Lightweight" — is built for speed from the engineering to the paintwork. The car comes with the most powerful straight-six BMW has ever put on the street, with a mindboggling 560 hp in a car that weighs just 2799 pounds at the curb. To contain that power, the CSL will also sport the highest level M-series carbon ceramic brakes.

In keeping with the relentless purism of the design, the CSL will come standard with a classic 8-speed manual stick shift. No digital inputs or flappy paddles need apply. The interior is stripped back and simple, just two bucket seats and a few aesthetic flourishes, keeping the focus where it belongs: On performance. Just to make the point further, the CSL will come with gold-painted alloys, a wild white exterior striped with vivid blue and red, and a model number, 1 through 50, in bold black on both doors.

The BMW 3.0 CSL is available now and awaiting applications from interested collectors.