TITLE: BMW 3.0 CSL Cars at Auto Lemon - Used Car History Check

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BMW 3.0 CSL CAR

CARS > USED CAR HISTORY > BMW 3.0 CSL

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BMW 3.0 CSL (1971-1975) CAR HISTORY

Car review on BMW 3.0 CSL

The CSL was a lightweight version of BMW's flagship six-cylinder coupe, built to homologate the car for European Touring Car Group 2 racing. The first CSLs, announced in May 1971, were real stripped-for-action 135mph (217kph) road racers with thinner body panels, no front bumper, fibreglass rear bumper, racing latches on the bonnet, manual winding side windows made from Plexiglas, and of course the alloy-skinned opening panels, all in the name of weight reduction. BMW even skimped on underbody rust protection and sound deadening, along with some drastically cheaper interior trim (4001b [181kg] was pared off the coupe). Top speed wasn't much affected but acceleration was decisively quicker. Suspension was stiffened by Bilstein gas shock absorbers with advanced progressive-rate springs. Wheels were fat Alpina 7-in (17.8-cm) alloys with chrome wheel-arch extensions to keep them legal. Black accent stripes distinguished the Leichtgemetal from the standard CS/CSi. 169 were built, all left-hand drive.


Although the CSL was originally fitted with the 2958cc carburettor version of the in-line six (giving 180bhp), a slight bore increase in August 1972 gave 3003cc which allowed it to slip into three-litre Group 2 competition. At the same time Bosch electronic injection replaced the twin Zenith carburettors and power rose to 200bhp, although brochures of the time quote a carburettor-fed 3003cc engine too. 539 were built. The British specification RHD car was introduced in the UK in October 1972 and came with the "RHD City package" to appease drivers who wanted the lightweight racer cachet without the discomfort. Most of the excess weight previously stripped off the car was put back. British importers took 500 CSLs but prices were high — more than an Aston or Jensen — and not everybody liked the Scheel bucket seats, awkward to get into, or wanted easily-damaged alloy panels.


The 3.2-litre CSL - nicknamed Batmobile - was announced in August 1973. It was left-hand drive only and had a bigger 3.2-litre (actually 3153cc) 206bhp engine to homologate the 84mm stroke used on the 3.5-litre works racing coupe. It was still badged three-litre. The same lightweight shell (initially available only in Polaris silver or Chamonix white with optional motorsport stripes) was used with alloy doors and bonnet, but, to take the weight and downforce of the rear wing, the bootlid was steel with a fitting for the spoiler.

The spoiler (racing kit) was packed in the boot on cars sold in West Germany, where such appendages were illegal. Daft as it looked, the wing was intrinsic to the coupes' success in the European Touring Car (ETC) scries, clamping tail to road with massive aerodynamic downforce. It was created in a panic session in a Stuttgart wind tunnel after Jochen Neerspach and Martin Braungart of BMW Motorsport found a loophole in FIA rules that allowed "evolutionary improvements" for existing models. With the works CSL about to return to the ETC, they were looking for a way to eliminate aerodynamic lift at speeds over 124mph (199kph).


It worked. Works CSL coupes easily outpaced Capris first time out at the Niirburgring, cutting lap times by 15 seconds. To use the wing on the track it had be homologated on a production car, hence the Batmobile bits. These also included a deep front spoiler, a roof hoop spoiler just above the rear window, a small lip spoiler on the edge of the bootlid and rubber "spitters" on front wings. Manual steering and Bilstein gas-pressure shock absorbers with three alternative levels of hardness meant the 3.2-litre CSL didn't need an anti-roll bar. The last CSLs, built in the1974-75, had minor differences such as a three-fin rear batwing and a driver's seat with an adjustable backrest.


BMW 3.0 CSL

 

SPECIFICATIONS

 

ENGINE TYPE

In-line six

CAPACITY

2985/3003/3153 cc

POWER

180-206 bhp

TRANSMISSION

3-5-speed manual

TOP SPEED

133-140 mph (213-225km/h)

NUMBER BUILT

1,095

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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BMW 3.0 CSL CAR

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TITLE: BMW 3.0 CSL Cars at Auto Lemon - Used Car History Check

Cars Directory: BMW 3.0 CSL Auto, Automobile, Automotive, Car, Cars, Classic, Classic Car, Used Cars, New Cars, Used Car, New Car

Site Description: BMW 3.0 CSL Used Car History reviews and guide on classic and older model cars. Including car designers from Italy and Germany. Learn history of cars from classic, exotic, used, new to prototype model cars.

Cars Topics: BMW 3.0 CSL Classic Cars, Price, Prices, For Sale, Part, Restoration,
Classifieds, Classified ads, pictures, muscle car, picture, and photo , AutoCheck, KELLEY BLUE BOOK, USED CAR HISTORY, VIN number, VIN SEARCH, VIN Check