Car and Driver takes a stab at one of the most talked car comparison these days: BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe vs. Audi A7.
The U.S.magazine compares the 2012 Audi A7 3.0T Quattro against the 2013 BMW 640i Gran Coupe, both cars powered by a 3.0 liter engine. While BMW uses an inline-six turbocharged unit, the Ingolstadt-based automaker hides under the hood of the A7 a V6 supercharged unit developing 310 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque. The 640i Gran Coupe outputs 315 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 330 pound-feet of torque. In a recent comparison by CNET, the popular magazine surprisingly chose the A7 as the better car, despite describing the 6 Series Gran Coupe as a more compelling product.
Let’s have a look at the review by C&D:
But get it on a twisty two-lane, and the GC feels bigger and heavier than the A7, even more so than its extra 1.6 inches in length and 115 pounds would suggest. Expansion joints and rough pavement send shivers through the chassis and up your vertebrae. The electrically assisted power steering, as in most new BMWs, is short on feedback despite being precise and weighted to cornering loads.
With our test gear attached, the 640i achieved 60 mph in 5.4 seconds and ran the quarter-mile in 14.1 at 98 mph, about the same as BMW’s lighter 535i. Aggressive shifts in the sportier modes heighten the sense of acceleration, as does having 330 pound-feet of torque available at 1400 rpm. The A7, however, was slightly quicker in every acceleration test, and it stopped from 70 mph in eight fewer feet. Slalom speed and skidpad grip were about even between the two, as was observed fuel economy: The BMW, aided by a stop-start system, averaged 25 mpg over 600 miles to the A7’s 24.
The 4178-pound Audi ran to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds and through the quarter in 13.7 at 103 mph with little drama. Although both cars share the same transmission, the A7’s feels better programmed, and its shifts are smoother. Throttle response is even more aggressive than in the BMW, and the supercharged V-6 is always willing. Neither engine has the rumble of a V-8, but the Audi’s makes better noises when prodded.
In the end, it wasn’t even close. An A7 with many of the BMW’s gizmos can still approach 85 large, but the 640i would’ve needed a standard flux capacitor to stage a comeback. The A7 isn’t perfect, but it does more with less, winning most of our subjective categories despite its lower price. It may not weaken the knees like the Gran Coupe, but it’s still exceedingly pretty. And it doesn’t exact as dear a toll for its beauty.