2022 BMW M5 CS is the company's quickest production car yet
It's also $30,900 more expensive than an M5 Competition.
Steven EwingFormer managing editor
Steven Ewing spent his childhood reading car magazines, making his career as an automotive journalist an absolute dream job. After getting his foot in the door at Automobile while he was still a teenager, Ewing found homes on the mastheads at Winding Road magazine, Autoblog and Motor1.com before joining the CNET team in 2018. He has also served on the World Car Awards jury. Ewing grew up ingrained in the car culture of Detroit -- the Motor City -- before eventually moving to Los Angeles. In his free time, Ewing loves to cook, binge trash TV and play the drums.
on Tuesday revealed its quickest production car ever, the 2022 M5 CS. Based on the already-extreme M5 Competition, the CS ups power, lowers weight and adds a few rad design touches to set it apart from the pack. That said, you'll definitely pay for the privilege.
The M5 CS uses the same twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 as the rest of the M5 range. Here, this engine produces 627 horsepower, an increase of 10 hp over the M5 Competition. Torque output is unchanged at 553 pound-feet, and that power gets to the wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. BMW says the M5 CS can accelerate to 60 mph in 2.9 seconds -- there's that quickest-ever spec -- though that's only 0.2 seconds off the Competition's 3.1-second time. The CS gets a revised exhaust with stainless steel tips, so it should sound pretty sweet under full acceleration assault, too.
Like the Competition, the M5 CS has an active all-wheel-drive system, with torque vectoring between the front and rear axles. The standard Active M rear differential can further shuffle power between the two back wheels, which is especially helpful since -- like all M5s -- the CS can shut off its front axle and operate in a rear-wheel-drive mode.
Thanks to the increased use of carbon fiber in the body panels and inside the car, the M5 CS is 230 pounds lighter than the M5 Competition, though it's still no lightweight, at 4,114 pounds. The roof, redesigned hood (which looks a little too Charger Redeye for our tastes), front splitter, rear diffuser, spoiler and mirror caps are all done in carbon fiber, as is the engine cover.
To better handle the slight power bump and reduced weight, the CS makes minor adjustments to the M5 Competition's springs and dampers, which are already a good deal stiffer than the base M5. Another boon for handling is the availability of grippy Pirelli P Zero Corsa summer tires, measuring 275/35R20 up front and 285/35R20 out back. These tires are a no-cost option, and you'll definitely want them. The 20-inch gold wheels, thank goodness, are standard, and you can get gold calipers for the carbon-ceramic brakes.
Speaking of which, there are a whole bunch of gold accents on the M5 CS. As well as the wheels, you'll find this gold-bronze finish on the grille surround and badges. Oh, and the LED running lights illuminate in yellow instead of white, which is an awesome bit of race-inspired style. It all looks pretty good against the frozen deep green paint of the car pictured here.
Inside the M5, the CS has a four-seat configuration with individual rear buckets. The carbon-fiber front seats have a ton of bolstering and look supportive as heck, and don't worry, the M5 logos on the front chairs are illuminated. You'll find CS badges throughout the cabin, as well as Alcantara suede. BMW's latest iDrive 7 infotainment tech is housed on a large touchscreen atop the dash, and a digital gauge cluster shows more important info, too.
Now, the massive caveat: The 2022 BMW M5 CS costs $142,995 including $995 for destination. That means it's $30,900 more expensive than the M5 Competition, which is a pretty significant increase. Yes, you get cool seats, gold trim and an extra 10 hp, but things like the gold wheels and P Zero Corsa tires could likely be sourced for a whole lot less. It's a similar story to the M2 CS: cool car, but really expensive. Nevertheless, BMW will only offer the M5 CS for the 2022 model year and the first US cars will arrive in the second half of 2021.