BMW M4 CS review

Yet another version of the epic BMW M4 has arrived, the serious CS model.

Pros: performance, usability, driving experience

Cons: huge price, OTT appearance

BMW M4 CS Design

BMW will no doubt tell you that the visual makeover from regular M4 to CS is in the name of functionality, but the updates also leave the onlooker in no doubt that they’re looking at the more extreme model. Lightweight carbon fibre sets the tone, found in the bonnet, front splitter, front air intakes, door mirror caps, rear diffuser and rear spoiler. This can be subtly hidden if the car is painted black, though choose one of the two new colours - Riviera Blue solid and Frozen Isle of Man Green metallic – and it really stands out, giving the coupe added aggression and undisputedly linking it with BMW’s actual race cars. Enhancing that link are the yellow lights up front, while the CS also gets the special laser-equipped rear lights first seen on the (even more hardcore) M4 CSL. This car is not for those that shy away from attention.

BMW M4 CS Interior

Given the exterior appearance, you’d be forgiven for expecting a roll cage and stripped-out interior, but the CS is far less extreme than that inside. In fact, it’s closer to a regular M4 than it is the CSL, as the latter had no back seats. The CS has those, though the focus is clearly on the people sitting up front. They get gorgeous M Carbon bucket seats that mix minimal design and weight with expensive Merino leather upholstery, and they’re even heated and come with electric adjustment.

There are plenty of CS-specific touches inside, although this car is loaded with equipment, including the latest generation of BMW’s curved dashboard display melding digital instrumentation with a snappy touchscreen. This features plenty of M graphics and some of the menus are unique to the M4, though the CS doesn’t have anything new in it as such. The driver can quickly choose their favourite driving settings at the touch of the “Setup” button on the centre console.

BMW M4 CS Performance & Drive

The core mechanicals of the M4 CS are little different to those of the M4 Competition with M xDrive. That’s the all-wheel-drive one. The CS does get a more powerful version of the fabulous twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six petrol engine, making up to 550hp in this state of tune. Breathing through a special exhaust featuring electronically controlled flaps and a lightweight titanium ‘silencer’, it makes a noise commensurate with the OTT styling. It’s not just for effect either, as this is one seriously fast car. The 0-100km/h sprint takes only 3.4 seconds, and it can in theory hit 300km/h.

Obviously that kind of speed is only possible on a track with an exceedingly long straight or in BMW’s home on a derestricted autobahn. And while the tweaked suspension has been honed with driving on a race circuit in mind, it is designed to be less extreme than the CSL so it’s more suitable for day-to-day use on a public road than its appearance would suggest.

Nonetheless, the only way to truly appreciate what this car is capable of is to take it on a track, and there it’s thrilling. Don’t let the presence of an all-wheel-drive system lull you into thinking that the M4 does it all for you, either, as this is a car that demands a lot from its driver when driven quickly. Those that love driving will relish getting behind the wheel.

BMW M4 CS Pricing

The M4 CS costs an eye-watering €214,841 in Ireland, pretty much €50,000 more than then M4 Competition with M xDrive the special edition is based on. Sure, the CS is special, and it looks quite different to the regular model, but that’s too big a premium to pay unless you really do plan to use its ability on track regularly.

Carzone Verdict

Ok, so the price is a little bit ludicrous and can’t be justified in any rational way but get behind the wheel of the M4 CS in the environment it was designed for, and it’ll paint a big silly grin across your face. It’s a brilliant driver’s car, and that’s all that will matter to the few that are in an enviable position to buy one.

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