Anybody who has spectated at pretty much any endurance race around the world during the past half a dozen years will have noticed an inevitable gaggle of 2 Series BMWs. The M235i and M240i Racings have proven ideal entry-level endurance machines (before the Ford Ka, that is), delivering approachable and competitive dynamics with a reliable, production-derived powertrain. Now BMW has upped the ante for its introduction to Motorsport product, with an M2 CS Racing.
Derived from the new production variant, this CS Racing will again be aimed at racers in the VLN and TC America championships. Depending on series and Balance of Performance regulations, power from the S55 straight-six will be anywhere between 280hp and 365hp, with 450hp due in future via the 'power stick' technology first seen in the M4 GT4. As with the earlier Racing models and their eight-speed auto 'boxes, the M2 CS Racing will use the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission from the road car.
Additional concessions to circuit use for the Racing include "motorsport-specific" ABS and DSC, as well as driveshafts, wheel bearings, engine mounts and an LSD specific to this installation. There's also a Sabelt Taurus XL seat, Schroth harnesses, Sachs dampers, a standard 84-litre tank that can be fuelled from both sides (with 120 litres to be made available) and anti-roll bars with three settings front and rear. In fact, it's a lot more serious even than that, because this is ultimately meant for endurance racing that can extend as far as the N24; so the CS is also equipped with an air jack system, Alcon brakes and an adjustable rear wing, with a "powerful additional light for 24-hour races" on the extras list.
As such, given this should be race ready and raring to go wherever you want to take it, the CS doesn't come cheap: it's €95,000 plus taxes, which is 50 per cent more than the 235 cost back in 2013. Still, it looks like a lot more race car than the 235 as well, and BMW promises "totally new standards in the entry-level class" with this CS. Orders are being taken now, including at BMW M Motorsport dealers for the first time, with cars presumably set to be ready for the 2020 season. See you on the Nordschleife...