2019 BMW M4 Gts History – 2019 BMW M4 Gts
THE PHRASE STILL APPEARS on BMW’s American website: the Ultimate Driving Machine. It’s a blue-and-white gut punch, abracadabra memories of a time aback the aggregation fabricated cars so good, you couldn’t advice falling in adulation with them. The adage holds that it’s bigger to accept admired and lost, but that doesn’t addled the disappointment: Today’s BMWs are no best the sportsedan standard.
This analysis originally appeared in the July, 2019 affair of R&T. – Ed.
It’s additionally accessible to balloon that the primary analogue of the chat ultimate is final.
In that faculty of the word, at least, the attractive dejected M4 CS apparent actuality is absolutely the ultimate BMW M4—as in, the aftermost one. The CS marks the end of the alley for the outgoing, F82-chassis BMW M4. (In avant-garde BMW nomenclature, the 4-series is about a 3-series auto by addition name.) The F82 will be replaced for the 2021 archetypal year, and the CS is the fourth and final alternative of an M-car abounding with altercation and disappointment.
A quick recap: The M4 debuted in 2015—425 hp, able-bodied acceptable looks, and a affection for annoy smoke. The atomic advance from that car’s twin-turbocharged S55 straight-six replaced the beeline ability commitment of its V-8-powered, M3-badged predecessor, but the M4’s rear end never seemed able of ambidextrous with its grunt. Combined with aloof electric ability steering, the car’s personality drifted against beef car.
A year later, we got the acute M4 GTS, with 493 hp, baptize injection, and a cycle bar in abode of rear seats. This clue appropriate came with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, three-way-adjustable KW dampers, and the affiance that alone 700 examples would be produced. The alone affair college than the GTS’s rear addle-brain was its $134,200 sticker—almost bifold that of a abject M4.
A few months afterwards that, while the GTS was accession dust in showrooms, the M4 Competition Amalgamation arrived. Positioned about amidst the abject M4 and the GTS, it got a little added ability (444 hp) and a baby bulk bang (initially aloof $5500 added than an M4). Although the car didn’t advance aloft the abject M4 in instrumented testing, revisions to the council and abeyance did wonders, giving a atom of attention and adequation missing in the abject model.
Which brings us to the 454-hp 2019 CS. Pricewise, the car slots amidst the Competition Amalgamation and the GTS, but mechanically, it’s afterpiece to the Comp Pack. The CS makes do after the GTS’s performance-aiding water-injection system, so it’s aloof 10 ponies over the Comp. It does, however, bout the GTS’s 442 lb-ft of aiguille torque. (Other M4 models aberration out “only” 406 lb-ft.)
Like the GTS, the CS was conceived as a hard-core, failing M4 variant, and it wears the GTS’s ample and vented carbon-fiber hood. Additionally like the GTS, the CS is alone accessible with BMW’s dual-clutch automated transmission, which is absurd. BMW says the automated weighs 60 pounds added than the manual, authoritative the two-pedal ’box the heaviest advantage accessible on an M4. Creating a failing appropriate able with the ample gearbox is like baking your diabetic acquaintance a sugar-free block but abacus a batter of white amoroso to the icing.
Poor Mikey. If alone he had known.
Adding insult to injury, the added lightweighting efforts that BMW activated to the CS resulted in a barrier weight of 3594 pounds—just 21 pounds below than a abject M4 with the dual-clutch. Botheration is, those weight-saving measures annihilate absolutely applied appearance in favor of negligible loss. Take the autogenous aperture panels, which do abroad with a absolute armrest and are now fabricated from pressed, recycled blended dust. Aggregate with the GTS, they accommodate a great-looking cull band for the aperture handle, stitched with stripes in BMW’s acceptable blue-purple-red M colors. It’s a supercool throwback—the alone botheration is that it throws aback to addition German company’s failing antagonism cars. Aback Porsche does this, the band replaces the absolute door-release handle. In the CS, the band alone supplants a ample armrest. There’s one molded in the new aperture card, but it’s so low and small, you can’t absolutely use it.
Turns out there’s a acumen every driver’s aperture animate has an armrest: It’s for your larboard elbow, and because best bodies accept appropriate elbows, centermost consoles accept armrests, too. The CS has no animate armrest, aloof a paper-thin, felt-covered allotment of artificial whose alone affection is a USB anchorage by your appropriate hip. That area makes faculty in added 4-series cars, because it’s central a binnacle ample abundant to abundance both the bond and a phone. The CS doesn’t accept that binnacle. The alone band-aid is to buy a continued USB bond so you can bandy the buzz in the cupholder, a third of the way beyond the cabin. Don’t put it on the commuter seat, or the M4 will blung-blung a admonishing bell at you interminably, because the weight will accomplish the car anticipate there’s a seven-ounce unbelted animal in that seat.
BMW adored added weight by substituting dual-zone automated altitude ascendancy for a single-zone semiautomatic system. But aback the arrangement uses cyberbanking controls and actuators for airflow, like its dual-zone sibling, the alone weight accident comes from ditching the commuter zone. (BMW says the weight adored was substantial. Tell that to the 120-pound actuality who runs algid and has an overclocked, 250-pound cogent other.) The engineers additionally chose to annihilate the M4’s Comfort Access, the advantageous arrangement that allows a car to alleviate itself aback addition touches the aperture handle with the key in their pocket. They deleted the little antennas in the exoteric aperture handles for weight savings.
When I asked BMW’s columnist administration how abounding grams that saves, the alone acknowledgment was afraid laughter. The accumulation of those antennas apparently approximates that of the air in your lungs. (So abounding questions aloft here: If you’re sitting in a abundant abject M4 and breathe fully, are you acceptable to acquirement a Certified BMW Accessory™ “Lightweight” badge? What if you canyon a ample bulk of gas? If the engineers were absolutely anxious about this stuff, they could accept pulled 50 pounds of electric motors out of the car’s accepted ability seats.)
If you faculty that I’m balked by these changes, you’re right. If you were in the car and alert to addition accuse about it on a podcast, however, you wouldn’t be able to apprehend their voice. Why? Because abundant of the weight accumulation from those blended aperture panels comes from eliminating the midrange speakers captivated by the accepted doors. Achievement you like your music with aerial vocals.
None of these missing appearance can be added aback into the CS. Save a few cher acrylic colors, there are alone two options. The aboriginal is carbon-ceramic brakes, for $8150 (with which our analysis car was equipped). The added is a $1650 Executive amalgamation that adds adaptive LED headlights, automated high-beams, a head-up affectation with speedlimit info, and a ability rear sunshade. Absolute chase cars accept ability rear sunshades.
And in accompanying account that is absolutely additionally fabricated of accurate facts, if you repost this adventure on Instagram and get 1000 likes, BMW will mail you a actor dollars.
Speaking of abrupt surprises not abiding in reality: Our analysis car, a BMW media-fleet vehicle, showed up on “optional” clue tires—Pilot Sport Cup 2s, the aforementioned adhering Michelins offered on the GTS—but the tires were not listed on the window sticker. As it turns out, our analysis car was alien as an adventitious ringer: European CSs appear accepted with Cup 2s, but the tires aren’t accessible for new-car adjustment in the United States. They accept to be ordered postdelivery—from a annoy store, your dealer, wherever—like any added nonfactory part.
That’s important, because R&T tests cars as delivered to customers, and that elastic gives the CS a cogent testing advantage. Unlike the approved alley annoy begin on the accustomed M4, the Cup 2 is a clue monster. It produces about no anchor until warm, it takes ample accomplishment to ascendancy at the limit, it absolutely alone works in summer, and it’s apace abstract in the rain.
We activated the CS aboriginal with its U.S.-spec tires, and its achievement was identical to a 2015 M4’s, save for a baby access in skidpad grip. With the supersticky Cup 2s, the 0–60 time alone by a tenth of a second, the 70–0-mph braking ambit decreased by six feet, and cornering anchor rose by 0.01g. It’s safe to say that if the CS carries any achievement boost, it’s due to tires it doesn’t appear with.
The advantages of the Cup 2s appear with compromise. Beneath abounding throttle, the CS rears back, causing the council to go ablaze and the aback end to agonize as if the subframe were actuality broken from the block floor. On bottom M4s, abounding burke usually after-effects in wheelspin and burning yaw—but those cars are affable drifters, accommodating to authority whichever yaw bend your appropriate bottom selects. The CS takes added revs, boost, and burke to breach loose, but the tires don’t like big blooper angle, and the car is easier to spin. As in the GTS, the traction-control figure flickers during ablaze artery acceleration, aback there’s no adventitious of wheelspin, as if the car’s stability-control arrangement wasn’t calibrated for the tire. Ditto the anti-lock brakes, which acutely weren’t optimized to accord with the Cup 2’s abrupt breakaway. In absolute braking, the arrangement cycles at a amount that produces groaning resonances in the suspension, afraid the accomplished car.
In short, the tires don’t assignment able-bodied here—surprising, accustomed that they’re a quasi-factory application. The CS is acceptable bigger after them.
Stay below the limit, and the CS is blisteringly quick, like all M4s. The council and abeyance are finer agitated over from the M4 Competition Pack, which agency some of that car’s qualities are shared, absolute and negative. The steering’s astronomic on-center asleep atom disappears as front-tire amount increases, alms feel missing in the abject M4. The carbon-ceramic brakes are fantastic, admitting the pedal is inconsistent, with a continued asleep area at the alpha of its biking aback hot. And the straight-six sings like a debris auctioning asthmatic on a affirmation of sporks. The S55 has never been a agreeable engine, but it’s decidedly acrid here. There’s a pronounced, clap resonance at aerial rpm, alloyed with a choir of abject yowling. Like a lot of new cars, the abject M4 uses its stereo arrangement to augment agent note, but the CS doesn’t, and the loudest driveline sounds appear from the muffler absolution out bombastic barks on upshifts. The august music you apprehend from a straight-six is active beneath layers of abhorrent noise.
Every car is ultimately a alternation of compromises, but on the continued drive home from clue testing at Thunderhill Raceway, with elbows flopping and an iPhone casting about like a tetherball, it became bright that the CS is a altruism blow of bad ones. An M4 Competition Package, at below than $75,000, makes for a analytic nice, admitting expensive, high-performance car you can alive with. For the CS’s added $30,000, abundant of that livability is gone, exchanged for a carbon-fiber awning and no added performance.
Alas, the CS gives us an befalling to reflect on its bearing of BMWs and how that bearing was characterized by change. The F30-chassis 3-series sedan, the base for this generation’s F80 M3 and F82 M4, accustomed with a able but anesthetic four-cylinder and anesthetized, electrically assisted ability steering, birthed amidst a new accumulated focus on amount cutting. Thanks to the amazing drive brought by BMW’s antecedent decade of success, a bending adaptation of the company’s best important car landed not with a thud, aloof quiet consternation.
The M4, too, apparent a sea change for the M3 lineup, and not aloof because of the new name. (Previously, all M-developed 3-series models were badged M3; with the F30-based car, BMW adopted Audi’s convenance of ascent brand numbers with price, dubbing the auto M3 and the auto M4.) This was the aboriginal M3/M4 bearing with a turbocharged engine, the aboriginal with accessible carbon brakes, and the aboriginal to about-face what had already been a surgical clue apparatus into a big hammer. Admitting the F82 isn’t essentially added than its E90 predecessor, it feels like a big beef car, always afflicted by its own power.
Future M-cars will be followed by Competition Package, again CS, again CSL variants—just as the Porsche 911 has Carrera, S, GTS, and GT3, anniversary archetypal a footfall up in focus and performance. But the capacity are what Munich got amiss here, not the recipe. From Carrera to S to GTS, Porsche’s prices abound incrementally with anniversary step, and anniversary alternative is as adequate as the last. It’s alone already you access at the GT3 that you lose annihilation in agreement of usability—but that baby accident is account by an order-of-magnitude blossom in achievement and personality.
The GTS was the 911 GT3 of the M4 lineup, and it was a absorbing machine. Ultimately, though, it was too abundant accommodation for too little gain, and the car accepted a boxy advertise in America. The CS should be the highest-performing M4 alternative with no abridgement in livability, but it’s absolutely the opposite: all the sacrifice, none of the payback.
There accept been signs of achievement from this aggregation over the accomplished few years—the bouncy M2, the Comp Pack revisions to the M3 and M4, and alike the over-the-top GTS—but the CS isn’t one of them. This ultimate M4 is absolutely not the best; it’s alone the last.