A look back at the BMW 3.0 CSL ‘Batmobile’ 0

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Is there a more coveted sporting BMW than the 3.0 CSL? Perhaps, but by god it’s beautiful…

The revered and iconic shape of the big BMW coupe was first sketched out on the drawing board in 1965 – the 2L coupe by Karmann. By ‘68 it had developed into the e9 chassis and production continued until the final unit rolled off the production line in 1975.

BMW had long desired a return to the luxury car sector, an area they had been forced to neglect as the company fought for its survival in the early 60s. Prior to the 3L CSi all earlier cars had been carbureted.

The homologation CSL played a hugely important part in BMW motorsport history. With its aluminium bonnet, boot and doors and stripped down of all the conventional models luxury accoutrement, it weighed very little and was subsequently very fast. The formation of BMW Motorsport GmbH saw the production of an astonishing series of engines. While the CSL didn’t wear an M badge, it is widely considered as the first M car, the one that first carried the tri colour motorsport livery.

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