After releasing its 3.0 CSL Hommage earlier in the year, BMW continues to surprise with its conceptualised models.
The new road-going but track-ready BMW M4 GTS Concept made its debut at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance last week. Even though it’s officially only a concept, plenty of recent Nurburgring images have been bandied about of the production version, which we expect to see on the road some time in 2016.
“While the BMW M4 Coupe embodies the ideal combination of motor sport genes and unrestricted everyday usability, the BMW Concept M4 GTS previews an emotionally powerful and exclusive special model conceived with an eye for trailblazing technology and a keen focus on the race track,” said Frank van Meel, President BMW M Division. “Despite its outstanding track ability, it is still fully road-legal. This is racing technology for the road in the truest sense.”
The M4’s twin-turbo, 3.0-litre inline-six is equipped with an innovative water injection system on the GTS. The water injection system is basically an advanced cold-air intake; it injects water vapor into the intake manifold to reduce the air temperature. This can in turn allow for earlier injection timing, increased boost pressure and reduced tendency to knock. The water Injection system has been developed on the BMW M4 MotoGP safety car, and was said to provide a considerable advantage. Exact power figures are yet to be released by BMW, but a similar setup on the 1 series offered a 10 per cent gain, while BMW insiders say it will not exceed 500hp (373kW) to keep separation between the smaller M Car and its M5 and M6 big brothers.
To compensate for heat, M Division engineers have developed a complex thermal management system comprising of an extra two radiators for high and low temperature circuits, an indirect intercooler for the turbochargers and an additional electric water pump.
Performance oriented body modifications on the M4 Concept GTS include a manually adjustable front splitter and rear wing, a widened front air intake and a lightweight carbon fibre hood. These have all been seen on Nurburgring development mules.
The new M4 variant stands out amongst its siblings with a Frozen Dark Grey Metallic paint and Acid Orange Highlights. Forged light-alloy wheels are found on each corner, measuring 9.5 x 19 on the front and 10.5 x 20 on the rear. As the car is designed for the both road and track, Michelin Sport Cup 2 tyres are used, measuring 265/35 R19 on the front and 285/30 R20 on the rear.
To further compete in the luxury car lighting battle, BMW equipped the M4 GTS with OLED or organic light-emitting diode technology. A well executed OLED setup provides a substantially more precise effect as opposed to regular LEDs.
It is pleasing to see BMW sticking to its roots in regard to its special models of the M3 Coupe; it may be called the M4 now, but a production version of the M4 GTS will continue the tradition and join its special model M3 predecessors in spirit.