Bringing a BMW 3.0 CSL Back Into Life, Pt. VI
This article is part of a series:
Here’s the final result and the last part of our CSL restoration blog that took us from discovering it in its 15 years deep sleep in a garage close to London to the unfolding of its full beauty in our workshop. The car was sold for well above £130 grand.
The BMW chaps on this site will be bored with this statement, but this is for those with horses, cats and dragon-snakes in their labels: the BMW 3.0 CSi is THE BMW from a time when the company’s ascent to an admired premium brand began. It is what you guys have as your 911s, E Types and Bertones.
In the light weight version named CSL (Coupé Sport Leichtbau), from 1974 on, it battled Porsche’s 934 in countless races of the Touring Car series around the world. Just to give you an idea of the kind of spectacle that meant: with 3,5 litres and a four-valve cylinder head, it’s output went up to 440 bhp at 8500 revs with a weight somewhere close to a ton. And that’s not the end of the story. In the late seventies BMW explored the merits of turbo charging and the Group-5 work’s engine reached up to 800 bhp, a number unreached till the monsters of the 1,5 litre turbo era in Formula 1 arrived.
More legends? No problem. The car that launched the M Motorsport GmbH? Yep. The car that was used for Frank Stella’s and Alexander Calder’s Car Art Projects? As well. The car that BMW used as a Homage to introduce their new design style of the 2020ies? You got it.
Apart from its striking historic significance the CS series’ beauty brings you to your knees. Its proportions are perfect and the slim pillars give the roof structure a floating elegance.
19 additional images. Click to enlarge.