The track-focused, go-faster M2 is coming our way

BMW is reportedly readying an even hotter version of its M2 to sit above the M2 Competition - they are the M2 CS and M2 CSL, and our spies believe that’s what they captured in these photos. Some older reports from before the Competition model was launched, called it the M2 GTS. The white prototype features several changes over the M2 Competition and, as a Whole, it looks like a more aggressive, track-focused machine.

It has been suggested that the M2 CS would be a North America-only limited model available from 2020 and that the CSL would be even more extreme and sold on other markets from 2021, but right now it’s too early to make these predictions. Both will clearly be lighter, more powerful and better around a track than the Competition which in turn is one step up from the base M2.

Update 6/24/2019: The 2021 BMW M2 CS was caught testing again, and this time we’ve managed get a look at the interior. Check out all the details in the spy shots section below.

Spy Shots

June 24, 2019 – First Look at the 2021 BMW M2 CS’ Interior

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL
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2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL
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We’ve finally gotten a look at the 2021 BMW M2 CS’ interior and, to our surprise, it isn’t as void of interior trim as you would think. It appears to have slightly simpler door trim panels and don’t fret about the lat of Alcantara – there will be plenty of option boxes to select that will allow you to cover the steering wheel, parts of the dash, center console, seats and door trim panels, among other things. We’ve also been led to believe that the new M2 CS would ditch the rear seats in an effort to drop more weight but, as you can see from the images above, there could be a rear seat. It’s covered by the same tarps used to cover the front passenger seat, so it’s hard to say – it could just be a simple bench. Expect the M2 CS to debut at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show or sometime early in 2020 at a standalone event.

May 22, 2019 – The 2021 BMW M2 CS is Inching Closer to Production with … More Camo?

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL
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2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL
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We wish that we had something more to show you from this batch of spy shots, but this specific prototype is covered better than the last two that we say back in February and March of 2019. This time, the entire care is covered in the funky camo and, since the car was already wearing production goodies last time, there’s really nothing special here. It is rocking the carbon fiber roof and mirror caps, and it looks like that bulgy hood that we saw before (also carbon fiber) will carry over into production as well. It does look like there might be a small change to the rear diffuser between the exhaust outlets, but because of the camo’s design, we can’t really tell. Expect this intense little M to pump out somewhere in the neighborhood of 450 horsepower all of which will be shunted to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual or a seven-speed DCT. On that note, production will start sometime in 2020 but we’ll get to see it first come September at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA)

March 13, 2019 – Our First Close-Up Look of the 2021 BMW M2 CS

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL
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2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL
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All of the details that we see in these pictures have, for the most part, already been exposed back in February when we got our last round of spy shots. However, this time around, we actually get a closer look. Most of the CS-level additions are still masked, but as expected they will be carbon fiber and more pronounced than on that of the M2. In the rear, the spoiler if heavily covered as is the rear diffuser, but we can at least see the general shape. What we don’t see is the carbon fiber roof, but there is a rather ferocious hood buldge up from. The model seen here has been verified as a manual, so you can expect to choose from a six-speed stick or a DCT transmission at the time of ordering. We’re still a ways off from an official debut but, as you can see, the BMW is well on its way to perfecting the masterpiece that is the M2 CS.

February 20, 2019 – Playing in the Snow with Carbon Fiber

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Exterior Spyshots
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2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Exterior Spyshots
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The last time we caught the M2 CSL in prototype form, it was exactly that – a provisioned prototype with mock-up parts designed specifically for testing purposes. Fast forward to February 2019, and the M2 CSL has started to take on its true carbon form. The front splitter and front fascia are more pronounced and ready for production. Meanwhile, the rear diffuser has also be updated and appears to be production ready as well. The black foil wrap you see on this prototype is hiding away the traditional blue color associated with the 2016 BMW M2, and it’s also hiding the carbon fiber spoiler and carbon fiber roof. The Y-spoke wheels you see here appear to be of the 763 M variety and will measure 19-inches when production kicks off. Other features that will differentiate the M2 CSL include the carbon ceramic brakes revised hood with a bulge, and all that extra power and track-ready goodness under the hood. So far, we’ve expected the M2 CSL to debut in 2020 as a 2021 model but, based on the way this prototype looks, a debut in 2019 as a 2020 model is possible. Stay tuned for updates in the future.

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Exterior Styling

  • Has larger (possibly carbon-ceramic) brakes with gold-painted calipers
  • Trunk lid gets a noticeable spoiler
  • Power bulge on the hood
2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Exterior Spyshots
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The white prototype looks like a lot like the M2 Competition, with the optional M Performance front bumper which has a carbon fiber splitter with winglets on the ends. The grille is the new one from the refreshed 2-Series, finished in all black, but aside from it nothing appears to be different.

The hood, however, is different, featuring a visible power bulge like the one you see on the M3 and M4.

It’s clearly there and it clearly hints that this is a special model. From the side it doesn’t appear to be any different, although the gold-painted calipers you can see through the lightweight wheels finished in black suggest it has carbon ceramic brakes - the calipers are also larger than those of the Competition.

At the back the only addition is a ducktail spoiler on the trunk lid that is probably made out of carbon fiber, but was covered to make it less obvious while the car was undergoing testing.

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Interior Design

  • May come with lightweight seats
  • CSL may ditch rear seats completely
2018 BMW M4 CS High Resolution Interior
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BMW will probably give the M2 CS and CSL lighter front seats and the latter may ditch the rear seats completely in the quest for weight reduction. It may also feature different and more simple bare door cards which shed some weight, as well as a big CS or CSL bade somewhere very visible on the dash, as is the case with the M4 CS on sale now.

It is believed that all weight-saving measures could make the M2 CS up to 130 pounds or 60 kilograms lighter than the Competition model and BMW could even use less sound deadening in order to save additional weight in the CSL.

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Drivetrain And Performance

  • Will retain S55 twin-turbo engine from M3/M4
  • Small power bump expected
  • Manual and automatic versions will be offered
2019 BMW M2 Competition Drivetrain
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You’ll find the same Inline-Six under the hood (also in the M4)

The M2 Competition already uses the twin-turbo three-liter straight-six from the BMW M3 and M4, with 405 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque.

The CS and CSL will use the same S55 unit but with even more power, and BMW will most likely offer both manual and automatic transmission options.

The power bump won’t be massive, though, probably not more than 10 - 20 horsepower.

Performance-wise, its sprint time to 62 mph or 100 km/h could drop below the four-second mark, but top speed probably won’t increase over the current M2 Competitions’s derestricted top speed is 174 mph or 280 km/h. But if the CS and CSL have more aero, this will have a negative impact on outright top speed.

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Prices

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Exterior Spyshots
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BMW will charge you from $58,900 for an M2 Competition, and the M double-clutch automatic transmission adds $2,900, while the M Driver’s package (which removes the top speed limiter) is a further $2,500. The CS will probably easily be $5,000 more expensive and the CSL’s price will just seem absurd - it may even nudge $90,000, and only be available in the hundreds, if we look at how much more expensive and rarer the BMW M4 GTS is compared to the base M4.

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Competition

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4

2020 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop Spyshots
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Porsche is preparing to launch the most aggressive version of its 718 Cayman, the GT4. Expected to debut in 2019, unlike lesser 718 models, it will come with a six-cylinder engine - whether it will based on the new base 911 unit or the screaming four-liter naturally aspirated one is currently unknown.

The GT4 will be lighter, feature different bumpers, side skirts and rims compared to other 718s and carry a significant price premium over it. Spy photos of GT4 prototypes testing also show it’s going to feature a dual exhaust setup, which is a first for the model.

Read our full review on the 2020 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4

Aston Martin Vantage

2018 Aston Martin Vantage Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Looks similar to Mazda MX-5 at certain angles

With the weight shedding, extra power and extra exclusivity, the M2 CS and CSL will start treading on the tows of other light and very fast sports cars like the new Aston Martin Vantage. It uses a four-liter twin-turbo V8 with 505 horsepower and can sprint to sixty in 3.5 seconds and on to a top speed of nearly 195 mph.

It costs a lot more than the M2 in any guise, with prices starting from $150,000, but the M2 CS and CSL will run it pretty close for actual performance - and even exclusivity since there won’t be that many of them made.

Read our full review on the 2018 Aston Martin Vantage.

Final Thoughts

2021 BMW M2 CS/CSL Exterior Spyshots
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BMW has announced that its future strategy for M cars is to launch the base model, then the Competition and finally the CS and possible CSL closer to the end of its lifecycle. That’s what seems to be the plan here, to introduce the two hottest versions right at the end of the model’s life and only have a very short production run to keep exclusivity high.

The CS and even more extreme CSL will be collector cars in the future, especially since the M2 has future classic written all over it - even in standard form. The M2 is currently one of the best sports cars you can buy at any price point, so we hope the vehicle spied here really is the CS or CSL because it’s such a good car that it deserves all the special versions it can get.

  • Leave it
    • CS and CSL may carry considerable price premium

Further Reading

2019 BMW M2 Competition Exterior Wallpaper quality
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so BMW probably won’t increase pricing too much

Read our full review on the 2019 BMW M2 Competition.

2016 - 2018 BMW M2 Exterior High Resolution
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M2.

Update History

Update 05/22/2019 The 2021 BMW M2 CS is about ready to debut in Frankfurt in September, but that hasn’t stopped BMW engineers from continuing to put the prototypes to the test. Check out our latest spy shot below and get ready for the big debut.

Update 03/13/2019: Our spy photographers have managed to get some close-up shots of the 2021 BMW M2 CS. Check them out in our spy shots section below!

Update 02/20/2019:The 2021 BMW M2 CSL was caught in prototype form again, this time during cold-weather testing. At a glance it doesn’t look like much has changed, however, there’s more going on under that camo than what meets the eye. Check out our spy shots section below to learn all about it.

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