The G8X M3 / M4 styling discussion has already been done… extensively. While the front fascia looks are still a bit polarizing, the overall consensus has become overwhelmingly positive; aided in large part by the many aftermarket grille options now available. At IND, we wanted to offer a comprehensive look and comparison of all the options so customers can make an informed decision on the direction that best suits their individual styling goals. Unlike the many houses of Westeros battling for the Iron Throne, hopefully we can help make your choice of front grille just a bit easier.
FIRST OF THEIR NAME: Vorsteiner Aero Front Grilles
Vorsteiner was the first company to offer an aftermarket grille solution that was based on BMW’s own M4 GT3 front grille. They offer both a carbon as well as a gloss black variant; the only difference being that the carbon version uses 2-piece construction while the gloss black unit is a single piece like BMW’s CSL grille. The GT3 style grille keeps things simple by fitting models both with and without active cruise control.
The one-piece grille is easier to install utilizing the OEM tabs while the 2-piece will likely give you a bit of extra leeway to make sure each side fits as well as possible. Both versions include an emblem mounting plaque, but only for the standard emblems. There is not enough space for the “Competition” moniker. Though an added benefit that Vorsteiner offers is the option of including mesh inserts to help protect against rocks and small animals.
THE MANY-FACED GOD: AutoTecknic’s Many Options
You can almost consider AutoTecknic to be the savior of the G8X’s front-end all on their own. They took all the available grille style combinations and made an option for just about everybody. From the GT3 and GT4 to the CSL and everything in between; they produced every kind of option one could want.
ATK V1 GRILLES: MOTORSPORT AND PODIUM
AutoTecknic’s Motorsport V1 grille is available in 2×2 carbon weave and was their original take on the GT3 style front grille. Even though it utilizes 2-peice construction, the grille included unique mounting tabs not seen in the Vorsteiner piece that aimed to make installation easier. Compatible with models with and without Adaptive Cruise and with space on the emblem plaque for both the model and “Competition” moniker, these were a solid first attempt.
The Podium V1 grille was essentially identical to the Motorsport V1 grille with the exception of allowing owners that don’t have Adaptive Cruise to have an extra style element in the form of a cross bar in the lower portion of the grille to match the upper portion. This was a good solution for owners wanting a more uniform look.
AutoTecknic was very straight forward in their execution of the Motorsport V2 grille. They took their most popular grille, the GT3-styled Motorsport V1 and revised it to produce a single piece grille insert that mounted with the OEM tab setup.
Just like the V1, the grille fits models regardless of their Adaptive Cruise feature and included an emblem provision for the “Competition” badge.
THE CSL STYLE OPTIONS
The Carbon Competizione Sport grille was a complete CSL style grille, but in carbon construction. While early production included an emblem plaque meant for the CSL badge, the grille is now produced with the full size emblem plaque so the Competition emblems can be fitted. Like all grilles using complete CSL style elements, it cannot be fit to models equipped with Adaptive Cruise Control.
The Competizione Sport grille was also made available in a gloss black plastic construction if the carbon wasn’t to your liking. The only difference being the it only fit the standard, non-competition emblem.
AutoTecknic also produced their gloss black CSL grille in a Redline Competition Sport variant that added the same red outline that was present on the OE M4 CSL and M3 CS grilles; the only difference being that AutoTecknic’s Redline grille was professionally painted instead of going the red vinyl route that BMW settled on.
AUTOTECKNIC’S UNIQUE GT4 OPTION
One issue with all the CSL-styled grilles is that the M4 CSL was not fitted with Adaptive Cruise Control by BMW and therefore, any owner that ticked that option on their G8x build wasn’t able to install a CSL-styled grille, no matter how much they may have wanted to emulate it.
That changed with AutoTecknic’s introduction of their carbon Competizione GT4 front grille that incorporated the upper grille Y-bars, but left the lower grille openings free from any elements that would interfere with the Adaptive Cruise Control radar housing.
Unlike their early units, the GT4 grille incorporates an emblem mounting plaque that will fit the full Competition model emblems.
THE ONE TRUE KING: OE M4 CSL
There’s a lot to like about the OE CSL Grille. It’s the one factory part on this list so it installs and fits like a factory part. Interestingly, it’s also actually the most affordable G8x grille solution and is the only grille that includes a front grille emblem; however, most purchasers will choose to include an IND painted grille emblem with whichever grille they choose.
Unfortunately there are some downsides. It comes with a red striped-surround that will look out of place on most cars that don’t carry the theme throughout the car like the CSL does. Luckily it’s just red vinyl and can be removed. While it includes an emblem, it’s the OE M4 CSL emblem and unfortunately the M3 CS grille with corresponding emblem isn’t yet available from BMW. So an M4 CSL emblem certainly won’t work for M3 owners. And should you choose to remove the ‘CSL’ moniker, the emblem plaque will be significantly wider than your emblem and doesn’t include enough height for the Competition moniker. The CSL grille will also not fit models with Active Cruise Control.
HONORABLE MENTION: Stradale Design
The Stradale Design GT3 Front Grill was developed to enhance the cooling efficiency of the G8x platform. Starting with inspiration from the M4 GT3 race car’s front grill inlet, Stradale refined the surfaces to better suit the street car while also incorporating their patented “Vortex Generators” on the middle grille bar directing the air more efficiently to the radiators further cooling the water temperatures during high performance driving. We were big fans of this GT3-style grille that incorporated several design enhancements when compared to the other GT3 grilles on the market.
Unfortunately, while the design was top notch and our favorite of all, the fitment just wasn’t quite up to par. While we were eventually able to get the grilles to fit properly, the amount of effort required was deemed to be too much and we no longer offer this product to our customers.
Last edited by IND-Distribution; Yesterday at 11:03 AM..
Published at Thu, 20 Jul 2023 21:00:02 +0000