BMW M3 E46 CSL Classic Limited Edition
BMW M3 E46 CSL
When I was having an internship period in Hamburg, Germany back in 2014, my number one to-do list was to to visit the BMW Welt and the Museum in München. After I finally secured some days off from work and much savings later, I immediately booked a train ticket, a hotel room and a tour around the campus. As a BMW fan for 12 years and my dad owns a 3 Series E46 (which I use a lot since now my dad has his own company car), a certain car is on my top list. The BMW M3 E46 CSL.
This is the hardcore version of the BMW M3 E46, which is the hardcore version from the already-brilliant BMW 3 Series E46. The CSL stands for Coupé, Sport und Leichtbau (lightweight). The latter definition really fits this car, because the German engineers designed this car with strict diet. When I said strict diet, I mean supermodel-style strict diet. Just how strict? It has no radio, no AC, no electric seats (and the rear seats altogether as well), new carbon-fiber-reinforced-plastic roof, the rear window is thinner, the leather upholstery has been thrown into a bin and replaced it with some lighter cloth and alcantara, the boot lid is plastic and the boot floor is cardboard. All of those impracticality from weight savings (a total of 110 Kg) and mix that with the absolute masterpiece of an engine, the 3.2 liter, 360 BHP monster under the bonnet, and the results were astonishing. The tour guide said that before one paid the full price, one needs to sign some sort of an acknowledgement, stating that because the standard tires are semi-slick, it is very dangerous to drive this car with that tires in rain or even a mild shower. Utter savage.
When I finished the Welt tour and before moving on to the Museum tour, I saw a biblical amount of white smoke, from what was apparently a tire smoke from the campus’s west area. I went down there immediately to see what was the madness’s all about. Soon after, a CSL casually parked with a well-suited gentleman stepped out from the car to have a chat with his mates. The top picture was the very car, on the scene with all of those freshly marked skid marks. It seemed like the car shouted to me “what’cha lookin’ at kid? Those skid marks? Wasn’t me HAHA!” I was weak on my knees, shivering and astonished by this thing, even by merely standing next to it.
Now, back for some exclusivity matter.
Only 1383 examples were sold to the general public worldwide, including 422 for right-hand drive model; makes the CSL very rare and highly sought after. The sticker price when it was new back in 2002 was £ 58.000. A 13-years old, good condition CSL would costs you about £ 85.000 (assuming that you can find a person who are willing to sell his pride and joy), thanks to the top-dog performance and exclusivity. In the coming years, that price would only go north. You want one. Everybody should want one.
1) BBC Top Gear, Season 3 Episode 2.
2) BMWBlog by Johann Venter