The BMW E9 range of coupés were produced from 1968 to 1975. Initially released as the 2800 CS model, the E9 was based on the BMW 2000 C / 2000 CS four-cylinder coupés, which were enlarged to fit the BMW M30 six-cylinder engine. The bodywork was built by Karmann.
In May 1972, the 3.0 CSL was introduced as a homologation special to make the car eligible for racing in the European Touring Car Championship. The “L” in CSL meant leicht (light), which was achieved by using thinner steel to build the unit body, deleting the trim and soundproofing, using aluminium alloy doors, bonnet, and boot lid, and using Perspex side windows.
The third and final expansion stage of the BMW 3.0 CSL (July 1973 to November 1975) generated 152 kW (206 hp) from 3153 cm³. It owes its nickname “Batmobile” to an extensive aerodynamic package, in particular the huge rear wing, which was stowed away in the trunk of the vehicle due to the lack of approval for road use.
The CSL competed in Group 2 form in the European Touring Car Championship, with CSL drivers winning the Drivers title six times in the years 1973 and 1975 to 1979. The CSL also competed in Group 5 Special Production guise, winning three rounds of the 1976 World Championship for Makes. In FIA Group 4 spec, notably when driven by Hans-Joachim Stuck.