The 3.0CSL is a lightweight, performance-oriented version of the standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi coupe. It was originally developed as a homologation model for the German Touring Car Championship by a separate division within BMW AG, a division that would later become BMW Motorsport GmbH.
What do the letters “CSL” designate?
The “CS” suffix denotes “Coupe Sport” and was introduced with the Bertone-designed 3200CS of 1962. The “L” was added to this version of the 3.0CS in order to denote “Lightweight”
How much lighter is the 3.0CSL compared to the steel-bodied 3.0CS?
According to official BMW figures, a non-optioned 3.0CSL with all the aluminum body panels weighs 2,568 pounds or about 440 pounds less than an equivalent 3.0CS. City Package-equipped models are 297 pounds heavier than the standard 3.0CSL at 2,865 pounds.
Why is the later 3.0CSL sometimes referred to as the “Batmobile”?
In addition to the standard front airdam and rear spoiler, 3.2-liter CSL models could be fitted with a removable “racing kit” consisting of an air guide mounted above the rear window and an enlarged rear spoiler, both designed to increase downforce on the competition machines. The addition of these rather striking appendages resulted in the nickname “Batmobile.” Because these items were required on the road version for homologation purpose but could not be installed at the factory due to a conflict with various European laws, they were supplied as the removable kit.
How many versions of the 3.0CSL were developed?
BMW developed four different versions of the 3.0CSL over five years, all to European specification. The original version, produced in late 1971 and early 1972, utilized the standard 2,985-cc M30 engine with twin carburetors and was only offered in left-hand drive. A fuel-injected model displacing 3,003cc then replaced the earlier carbureted version and was produced in both left-hand drive and right-hand drive forms during late 1972 and early 1973. The final iteration of the 3.0CSL, all produced in left-hand drive and with a larger 3,153-cc engine, was built in two distinct production runs during late 1973 (first batch) and 1974-75 (second batch).
How many of each version of the 3.0CSL were produced?
3.0 Carburetor (LHD): 169 produced from 9/71 through 7/72
3.0 Injection (LHD): 429 produced from 9/72 through 6/73
3.0 Injection (RHD): 500 produced from 9/72 through 1/73
3.2 injection ( LHD): 110 produced from 7/73 through 10/73, 57 produced from 1/74 through 10/75
Where was the 3.0CSL produced?
Like all 3.0-liter E9-series coupes, the 3.0CSL was assembled at the Karmann Werkes in Rheine, Germany.
Does the 3.0 CSL have a unique chassis number sequence?
The original carbureted CSLs were based upon standard 3.0CS production models and therefore have no unique model code or chassis sequence. Instead, their chassis numbers (VINs) fall within the normal 3.0CS production sequence. However, all fuel-injected CSLs have a unique model code and chassis number sequence. Fuel-injected CSLs with the 3.0-liter motor have VINs that run from 2275001 through 2275429 (left-hand drive version) and 2285001 through 2285500 (right-hand drive version). The final 3.2-liter CSLs (commonly referred to as “Batmobiles”) have VINs that run from 2275430 through 2275539 (first batch) and 4355001 through 4355057 (second batch).
What engines were fitted to the 3.0CSL?
The engine used in the first version of the 3.0CSL was entirely unchanged from the standard 2,985-cc M30 inline-6 found in the 3.0S / 3.0CS models. With an 89mm bore, an 80mm stroke and dual Zenith carburetors, this unit produced 180 hp (DIN) at 6,000 rpm and 192 lb/ft of torque at 3,700 rpm.
The second version of the 3.0CSL carried over this same basic engine configuration but the bore was increased very slightly to 89.25mm (for a new overall displacement of 3,003cc) and the twin Zenith carburetors were replaced by an electronically-controlled Bosch fuel injection system. Horsepower increased to 200 hp (DIN) at 5,500 rpm and torque increased to 204 lb/ft at 4,300 rpm. Though these were identical outputs to the standard fuel-injected 2,985-cc unit found in the 3.0Si / 3.0CSi models, the slightly larger displacement helped better suit the requirements of the competition version.
The final version of the 3.0CSL utilized a further enlarged version of the fuel-injected M30 powerplant with a longer 84mm stroke for a new overall displacement of 3,153cc. Peak power and torque both increased slightly to 206 hp (DIN) at 5,600 rpm and 215 lb/ft at 4,200 rpm, respectively.
What transmissions were offered on the 3.0CSL?
All 3.0CSLs were equipped with the same Getrag four-speed manual gearbox found in other three-liter E9 coupes and utilized the same gear ratios: 3.855 (1), 2.20 (2), 1.40 (3), 1.00 (4). This was mated to a limited slip rear differential (25 percent locking) with an axle ratio of either 3.45:1 (carbureted model) or 3.25:1 (all fuel-injected models).
How is the suspension of the 3.0CSL different from that of the 3.0CS/3.0CSi?
Though made up of the same basic MacPherson strut/semi-trailing arm design as all E9 coupes, the CSL incorporates the following changes:
-Bilstein gas-pressurized shocks
-specific progressive-rate springs with 20mm reduced height
-increased camber (1.1-degree in the front, 1.0-degree in the rear)
NOTE: CSLs are not equipped with front or rear anti-roll bars
What kind of steering system is fitted to the 3.0CSL?
Like all E9 coupes, the 3.0CSL utilizes a ZF worm and roller steering system, though it is different in two respects: the overall ratio is slightly longer (18.9:1 versus 18.0:1) and it is not power assisted except as an option or when equipped with the available “City Package”.
What kind of brakes are fitted to the 3.0CSL?
The 3.0CSL is equipped with the same 10.7-inch disc brakes on all four corners as the standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi models.
What size wheels and tires is the 3.0CSL equipped with?
All 3.0CSL models are fitted with Alpina 7x14-inch alloy wheels wearing 195/70VR14 tires (originally Michelin XWX).
How does the exterior of the 3.0CSL differ cosmetically from the standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi?
The 3.0CSL can be distinguished from its 3.0CS/3.0CSi counterparts by the following items:
-aluminum hood, doors and trunk lid
-chrome fender lip extensions
-racing-style pin release for the hood*
-lack of front bumper*
-lightweight (5.5 lbs.) plastic rear bumper without overriders*
-“Verbel” laminated windshield
-lightweight window glass*
-fixed rear side windows*
-lack of trunk lock and tool kit*
*does not apply to most UK-spec right-hand drive examples or those with the City Package
In addition, the final 3.2-liter CSL models differed cosmetically from the earlier models by including the following:
-black rubber air guides on the front fenders
-steel trunk lid with plastic rear spoiler and rubber lip
-“3.0CSL” decal in place of metal rear model badge
-tri-color stripes on side and front airdam
(Chamonix and Polaris metallic cars only)
How does the interior of the 3.0CSL differ cosmetically from the standard 3.0 CS/3.0CSi?
The interior of the 3.0CSL can be distinguished from that of the 3.0CS/3.0CSi models by its unique three-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel and Scheel sport seats in black cloth upholstery with black leatherette bolsters. In addition, the roof lining is also black.
What options were offered on the 3.0CSL?
Though generally equipped to a minimal specification to retain the lightest curb weight, the 3.0CSL could be fitted at extra cost with the following features: power front windows (including standard glass), tinted windows (including standard glass), velour carpeting, locking gas cap, air conditioning, headlight washer/wipers and passenger-side mirror.
What is the City Package?
A City Package was offered as an option on all 3.0CSL models and fitted to the majority of right-hand drive cars sold in the UK. Designed to make the 3.0CSL more usable as a daily driver, it consisted of the following items:
-steel body panels (not included on all examples)
-standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi chassis components (including anti-roll bars)
-standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi front and rear bumpers
-standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi windshield
-standard 3.0CS/3.0CSi side glass
-interior hood release
-additional sound deadening
-retractable rear side windows (power-operated)
-tool kit on inner trunk lid
Photos courtesy of 4starclassics.com