BMW has released lots of details on the new M3 GTS, a lightweight track special with a 450bhp 4.4-litre V8. Can it beat the old M3 CSL around the 'Ring? That's the aim.
The mysterious BMW M3 with a massive wing spied testing on the Nurburgring a couple of weeks ago has now been identified. It was this brand new M3 GTS, the most extreme 3 series-based factory car of the current E92 generation.
Installed into the engine bay is a 4.4-litre V8 based on the 4.0-litre engine found in the standard M3. Maximum power is 450 PS (331 kW / 444 bhp) an increase of 30 PS (22 kW / 29.5 bhp) and the transmission is the 7-speed M dual clutch transmission (M-DCT) with adapted shift characteristics. The exclusive 19-inch aluminium wheels come wrapped inside 255/35 front and 285/30 rear tyres.
Suspension upgrades include the utilisation of yellow springs for a threaded suspension while the rear axle support is said to be bolted in place. Most notable in previous spy materials was the big rear wing which generates high levels of downforce. It is adjustable as well as the front splitter for increased cornering precision and handling.
Despite the factory car having weight-saving pieces like the carbon fibre roof, BMW saw it fit to reduce body mass even further. After all, the GTS aims to beat the old M3 CSL's Nürburgring lap time. Measures thus taken include employing light body-contoured seats, a new titanium rear silencer whose work can be heard on the video as well as the removal of air conditioning and the rear seat. Rollover protection mounts were bolted on from the B column while a fire extinguisher and a battery master switch/emergency shut-off preparation ensure safety.
BMW will only manufacture the M3 GTS to order and sell it at about €115,000 (US$170 614) per unit. German deliveries begin in May 2010 while other countries are scheduled for the summer.