CSL 3.0 Coupe
Engine: 3.0L SOHC Inline 6 with 9.5:1 compression ratio, Bosch D-Jetronic fuel injection
Horsepower: 200 hp (150 kW) at 5,500 RPM
Torque: 188 ft-lbs at 3,700 RPM
Transmission: 4-speed manual
A Little History
Introduced in May 1972, the 3.0 CSL was a homologation special built to make the car eligible for racing in the European Touring Car Championship. 1,265 were built.
The “L” in the designation meant leicht (light), unlike in other BMW designations, where it meant lang (long). The lightness was achieved by using thinner steel to build the unit body, deleting the trim and soundproofing, using aluminum alloy doors, bonnet, and boot lid, and using Perspex side windows. By removing the trim, using thinner steel for the main body-shell, aluminum alloy for the doors, hood and trunk lid, and Perspex for the side windows an impressive 300-lbs in weight was saved – ‘Leicht’ indeed!
The five hundred 3.0 CSLs exported to the United Kingdom were not quite as light as the others, as the importer had insisted on retaining the soundproofing, electric windows, and stock E9 bumpers on these cars. The CSL was never sold in the United States.
The E9 platform, especially the 3.0 CSL homologation special, was very successful in racing, especially in European Touring Car Championship and the Deutsche Rennsport Meisterschaft. This helped to establish BMW’s status as a sporty driver’s car and an ultimate grand touring car.
The 3.0 CSL was homologated initially with a fractionally over-bored (3,003 cc) engine, which enabled it to compete in the over 3-liter class.