BMW’s 3.0 CSL Hommage blends old and new, but the cocktail leaves a bitter taste

Last week, BMW surprised us with a teaser of a new Hommage concept, the 3.0 CSL, ahead of its reveal at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este. The small glimpse we had of the design concept was highly promising, and now the German automaker has fully revealed the Hommage.

“Our Hommage cars not only demonstrate how proud we are of our heritage, but also how important the past can be in determining our future,” says Adrian van Hooydonk, senior vice president BMW Group Design.

While the concept attempts to honor the iconic BMW coupe from the 1970s, it’s difficult to call the integration of future styling and classic characteristics a success. From certain angles, you can absolutely see cues from the brand’s heritage, while the front seems to be pulled straight from the i8. In theory, a melding of the two would look stunning, but the results just feel wrong.

If you can look past the buck-toothed front fascia, the rear two-thirds of the concept are sleek, if not a tad overdone, and everyone loves side-exit exhaust. Inside is all-concept, with an F1-esque steering wheel and slender stitched-leather sport seats.

Other elements of its design include headlights inspired by the 2016 BMW 7 Series, flared front and rear wheel arches, and both a roof-mounted and trunk-mounted spoiler to mimic the classic 3.0 CSL’s exterior. Its body is made from carbon fiber reinforced plastic and weighs 200kg/440 pounds less than the original 3.0 CSL.

One rather puzzling design question relates to the hood: while the fenders overlapping the bonnet add some pizazz, it would seem impossible to open the hood. That may explain why BMW didn’t release any information about what powers the 3.0 CSL Hommage.

While aesthetics are always subjective, something tells me this particular Hommage won’t enter the halls of “future classics” anytime soon.

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