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Beefed up 331-kW M3 GTS

2009-11-06 13:31
BMW's M3 carries some clout, for sure, but how about spicing things up with the M3 GTS? Think bigger engine and a rollcage…

Based on the M3 Coupe and using a host of race-inspired modifications, the GTS is mostly hand built at BMW's M quarters. All cars are delivered in Clubsport mode for track events with an option of road homologation. Aerodynamic enhancements include a race-oriented front airdam and rear wing.

Lightweight construction is key and, with the used of carbon fibre for the roof (already seen on the standard M3 Coupe), titanium silencers, the addition of a lightweight centre console and door linings and the scrapping of the rear seats, automatic air conditioning and audio system, this car's unladen weight is less than 1 500 kg. This despite the inclusion of a bright orange rollcage…

Bigger engine, more power

GTS also adds a V8 powerplant with capacity expanded to 4.4 litres (from the standard M3's 4.0-litre). Along with its added motorsport bits this translates to a boost in power from the high-revving motor from 309 to 331 kW.

Drive to the rear wheels is via the seven-speed M DCT with Drivelogic. Although an option on the regular M3, for GTS the transmission's shift characteristics have been tweaked for the added power offered on this model.

This M's suspension has been given the once-over too, while the high-performance brake system comes with fixed calipers uses six pistons up front and four on the rear wheels.

Cabin fever

GTS in its bright orange livery makes a real statement running, as it is, on 19-inch M light alloy Competition rims with a double-spoke design.

The interior has not been left untouched either. While the rear seats have been tossed, proper bucket seats are new for the two occupants in a cabin trimmed in carbon fibre and boasting an M steering wheel finished in Alcantara.

For use in emergencies, a fire extinguisher is part of the package, too.

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