BMW M4 AC Schnitzer ACS4 Sport
Let’s set one thing straight from the beginning: there’s no substitute for the BMW M4 GTS right now on the market. No matter what some people will tell you, there’s a reason why that car costs as much as it does and why it is so damn fast on a track. However, the price tag and limited availability of the thing will make customers look for something else. What could act as a surrogate?
Well, we have a sneaky suspicion that the ACS4 Sport model from AC Schnitzer might be close. The Aachen-based tuner has been around for a long time and during those years, it specialized itself in tuning BMWs and MINIs. With the sales figures for both brands increasing from year to year, the tuning business has been growing as well, offering the companies involved in it the chance to work with a larger cash flow.
Ultimately, that leads to better wages for the engineers that create the parts to be added to the bodies of the cars, and therefore, better end products. That being said, the ACS4 Sport comes at precisely the right moment, with the perfect performance.
Let’s compare it to the M4 GTS, shall we? Up front, the ACS4 Sport can be fitted with canards, new add-ons for the spoiler, and a splitter. At the same time, the GTS comes with an adjustable front splitter that is impressive in size. The aftermarket choice is not bad either, both of them improving downforce and grip. The canards though are only available for the AC Schnitzer creation.
Round the back, both models get a wing, but they are different in design. While both are made of carbon fiber (to be more precise, the GTS’ is made of CFRP), they do have a different layout. In the ACS’ case, you can either get a homologated version or one for the track. The GTS is legal on the road too, so you need not worry in this regard.
The wheels are also forged and lightweight on both models, the ACS range offering more than one option, as is the case on the BMW. This is just subjective, though, as they offer excellent performance in both instances.
The suspension of a regular M4 can be changed as well, to be closer in performance to the GTS, but the guys from AC Schnitzer may not get it perfectly the same as on the rare bird from Munich.
Last but not least, we need to talk about the engineering. The BMW M4 GTS comes with the first production engine to use water injection cooling. What this does is cool the air that goes into the cylinders to reduce knock and improve viability while increasing performance drastically.
The 3-liter inline 6-cylinder engine of the standard M4 was therefore taken up to 500 HP and 600 Nm (443 lb-ft) of torque, a figure that allowed it to become the fastest car the Germans ever made. The best part about it is that we’re assured that even though it was pushed to the limit, the engine won’t give in prematurely.
On the ACS4 Sport, you get a kit that takes things even further, with an output of 510 HP and 645 Nm (476 lb-ft) of torque. Even so, the acceleration is just 0.1 seconds faster to 100 km/h (62 mph) according to the official numbers. The biggest difference is felt in between 80 km/h (50 mph) and 180 km/h (112 mph), a sprint that has been decreased by 1.7 seconds.
Therefore, the cars look close and have similar performance, but the ACS4 Sport will surely cost less than the GTS. When you also consider the fact that it’s not going to go anywhere, not being limited to 700 units, it starts to make sense.
Unfortunately, AC Schnitzer doesn’t list price tags for its components on its website and we can’t tell you exactly how much you’d need to spend to get all of this stuff, but considering that the M4 GTS is nearly twice as the standard car, we’re pretty sure that you’d come out cheaper altogether. Would this be an attractive proposition or is it going to be considered “the poor man’s GTS”? Let us know.