BMW’s red-hot track star stays cool with a twin-turbo water injected engine and reduced weight.
There is an old saying: “Out with the old, in with the new.”
For the BMW M4 GTS, this should read “In with the old, in with the new.” Why, do you ask? The M4 GTS is unique in that it combines automotive technology that is both cutting edge and a chip off the old block.
The M4 GTS is the first production car from BMW to be equipped with the latest automotive innovations such as OLED lighting, regenerative braking and, for the first time in recent memory, water injection technology, all in one package.
Water injection technology is not new; military fighter planes used similar systems over 70 years ago.
To clarify, water injection simply supplements the fuel system by cooling and condensing the air rushing through the turbo to provide more power yet maintain fuel efficiency, lest there be any misunderstanding from environmentalists about how the technology works.
The “standard” M4, already a high performance machine, is equipped with a standard six-speed manual or an optional seven-speed automatic transmission mated to a twin turbo 3.0 liter straight six engine producing 425 hp and 410 lb. ft. of torque that propels the M4 from 0 to 60 in 3.9 seconds. The M4 is no slouch. But the GTS caters to the driver who enjoys tastes beyond what the usual refinements can provide, or for someone who wants a track beast with street-legal drivability.
The M4 GTS shaves time off the 0-60 jaunt and does it in 3.7 seconds. Powered by the same engine as the standard M4, the GTS gets a bump in horsepower and torque to 493 horsepower and 442 lb. ft., respectively. Mated to a seven-speed, M-series dual-clutch transmission, the GTS sports a blistering estimated 190 mph top speed that leaves its stock cousin in the dust by comparison.
What truly makes the GTS special is its technology and weight-saving packaging. For starters, the water injection system only weighs 22 pounds but punches out 16 percent more horsepower and 10 percent more torque than the stock M4. The five-liter water tank is housed in the trunk and uses about one liter of water with each tank of gas in everyday (non-track) driving. Fuel consumption remains the same as the stock M4, but make no mistake, the acceleration and driving experience are not.
To reduce weight, carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) is extensively used in the construction of the GTS. The hood, driveshaft, spoiler and even the center console are made of CFRP. Other weight saving improvements include an adjustable three-way M coil over suspension, upgraded carbon ceramic brakes and staggered alloy wheels. Up front, the GTS rides on 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 265/35-series Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires and 20-inch wheels draped in 285/30-series rubber can be found in the rear. Reflecting the M4 GTS’ racing heritage is a roll bar and fire extinguisher inside the car. All GTS models are equipped with cabins draped in swaths of leather and Alcantara and are available in Sapphire Black, Mineral Grey, Alpine White, or Frozen Dark Grey.
BMW OLED Lights with Organic Light-Emitting Diodes
The GTS also features OLED (organic LED) tail lights, another revolutionary automotive innovation. The rear lights of the BMW M4 GTS are the first of any series-produced vehicle from BMW to feature OLED technology. OLEDs (organic light-emitting diodes) generate light using wafer-thin layers of semi-conducting organic materials. Unlike LEDs, which emit their light in the form of points, OLEDs light up over the entire surface. Their flat design (measuring just 1.4 millimeters in height) and the ability to trigger individual light modules separately presents a distinctive BMW lighting design, both during the day and at night.
With a 7-minute and 28-second lap around the famous Nürburgring-Nordschleife circuit in Germany, the M4 GTS is a spectacle of speed, cutting-edge technology and a rich motorsport heritage that can be appreciated by any driver. However, don’t expect to see one blowing past you on the way to work. This future cult classic will be personified in the form of less than 300 units that will be released in the U.S. You may also want to tell your friends to form a line if they want a ride; the GTS does not have rear seats. But then again, the best way to appreciate the BMW M4 GTS’ true performance is from the driver’s seat.
WHAT ELSE IS NEW?
BMW is delivering another ultimate driving experience: Introducing the Competition package for the BMW M6, a track-oriented performance package that delivers more power and improved handling.
The Competition Package boosts the output of the twin-turbocharged 4.4 V8 engine of the M6 to 600 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque and is capable of launching Competition M6 coupes and Gran Coupes to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds. The boost in output pays homage to the 2015 “30 Jahre” Limited Edition M5, the limited-edition model produced by BMW to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the M5, which at the time of release was the most powerful BMW ever produced.
As with the previous Competition package, an upgraded firmer suspension is part of the package. The springs, dampers and anti-roll bars have all been modified. The steering is more direct than the stock M6 and the Active M differential, Servotronic speed-sensitive steering and even the electronic stability control systems have also been modified to provide more responsive handling.
To make sure the M6 Competition Package stands out from the crowd, it wears 20-inch light alloy wheels and gets a sports exhaust with black chrome finish, carbon fiber accents and a choice of paint finishes: Austin Yellow or Alpine White. Order white and BMW will include its famous racing livery on the car, inspired by the famous BMW GT3 race car.