Short for Carbon Racing Technologies, CRT sounds like the evil twin of Efficient Dynamics, and has transformed the M3 saloon into something even more special. Looking at the car, nothing makes sense: it looks like a regular 3-series with a different set of wheels and some tuning bits added.
BMW already makes the M3 GTS, which is also about lightweight performance, and it’s only when you compare the two that you start to realize what the CRT is all about. Unlike the stripped out coupe, the Carbon Racing Technologies M3 has navigation, a premium stereo system and four doors for easy access in the back.
The M3 CRT actually debut a new production technique for carbon fiber parts, a process which BMW used to great effect on the front seats, front air intakes, rear spoiler and a new hood that is as strong as a conventional steel unit with just one quarter the weight. Weight was also saved with the aid of a titanium muffler, 19-inch Y-spoke alloy wheels and less sound deadening material.
Power comes not from the regular 4.0-liter V8, but from the 4.4-liter version of the same block, producing 450 hp at 8,300 rpm and 324 pound-feet of torque. The flood of horses is sent to the rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, and the M3 CRT can now reach the 100 km/h (62 mpg) mark in just 4.4 seconds, making it just as fast as the M5 without the use of turbos.