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New 2024 BMW M4 CS revealed: sweet spot secured?

BMW’s M4 CS might just be the best take yet on the already brilliant super coupe

It might seem like this generation of BMW M3 and BMW M4 have offered endless special editions and hot variants, but there’s reason to believe that the new M4 CS might just be the sweetest yet. Featuring the usual combination of an uprated engine, a more focused suspension tune and a lighter kerb weight, the BMW M4 CS retains the all-wheel drive system we know and love to produce what is a beguiling prospect for performance car fans. 

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Key facts first. The M4 CS runs the same basic ‘S58’ 3.0-litre in-line six cylinder petrol engine boosted by two turbochargers as all M3s and M4s of this generation. Yet here it runs a hotter 542bhp tune with a 650Nm peak torque. These figures usurp the recently uprated M4 Competition by 20bhp, with torque the same with that standard car. There are more changes within the engine, though, as BMW M has fitted a lighter crankshaft and reduced frictional losses, increasing the powertrain’s responsiveness and willingness to rev. 

The enhanced engine is connected to BMW’s snappy eight-speed automatic transmission and the xDrive all-wheel drive system. The setup is fundamentally rear-biased, but within the drive modes you can either select an even heavier skew towards the rear in 4WD Sport mode, or decouple the front axle altogether in 2WD mode. The power that is sent to the rear axle is still managed by BMW’s active rear differential, which is capable of mechanical torque vectoring, as well as intelligent locking under hard acceleration. 

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BMW claims a 0-62mph time of just 3.4 seconds, 0.3 faster than the rear-drive M4 CSL and 0.1 faster than the standard xDrive M4 Competition. Zero to 124mph takes just 11.1 seconds and with the M Driver’s Package fitted, top speed is limited to 188mph. 

Another place where the CS differs is its suspension, which has been lowered and stiffened over the standard Competition. Axle kinematics, wheel camber settings, anti-roll bars, spring rates and damper tuning are all tuned specifically for the CS, with an additional set of auxiliary springs thrown in for good measure. BMW has given the car a lighter forged 19 and 20-inch staggered wheel design familiar from the CSL, wrapped in standard Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 or optional track-focused Cup 2Rs. 

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Like with all BMW CS models, there’s a variety of bespoke carbon fibre elements to reduce overall weight including carbon replacements for the bonnet, front splitter, rear diffuser, door card inserts, centre console and the bucket seats. What is missing is the M4 CSL’s unique carbon bootlid with its distinctive ducktail, which was designed with a direct reference to the original M3 CSL. BMW has not confirmed an official weight figure, but it should sit between the featherweight 1,625kg of the CSL and the 1,850kg of the standard M4 Competition xDrive.

As well as the performance upgrades, the new BMW M4 CS also picks up the 2024 M4’s minor styling and tech updates, including a new set of headlights here still integrating the yellow signature within the daytime-running lights (EU laws only permit them to be yellow when the main headlights are active), as well as a brand new dashboard, steering wheel and BMW’s latest digital interface. 

Beyond this, the CS will also offer a range of bespoke colour and trim options in a high gloss or ‘Frozen’ finish. These include the launch colour, which is a Frozen version of the Le Mans Green available on the standard car, as well as a gold option for the forged wheel design. 

UK prices have yet to be confirmed, but we expect the BMW M4 CS to cost from around £120,000 – slightly more than the previous M3 CS, but not quite to the level of the £128,000 M4 CSL, which was both more limited in production and came with higher-cost bespoke carbon fibre elements.  

Click here for our list of the best performance cars...

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Senior staff writer

Senior staff writer at Auto Express, Jordan joined the team after six years at evo magazine where he specialised in news and reviews of cars at the high performance end of the car market. 

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