Car and Driver takes the all-new 2015 BMW M4 and pits it against the 2014 Porsche 911 Carrera. Now one might say that this probably an apples-to-oranges comparison, especially since one car produces 425 hp (M4 Coupe) while the 911 Carrera outputs 35o ponies.
But the U.S. magazine justifies their picks with the following statement:
“Each car is a reflection of its maker’s Weltanschauung, its worldview. BMW’s hot-rod coupe is the product of a full-line manufacturer adept at turning mainstream cars into performance specials. The 911 has been honed over the past 50 years by sports-car experts who only recently discovered sedans and SUVs. BMW and Porsche have more common ground with the X5 and Cayenne than with the M4 and the 911. Yet matchups like this 28-year rivalry are at the core of our Weltanschauung. What passes for one, anyway.”
The “base model,” known as the 911 Carrera, is fitted with a 3.4-liter flat-six that produces 350 horsepower at 7,400 rpm and 287 lb-ft of torque at 5,600 rpm. Output is sent to the rear wheels via either a seven-speed manual or the PDK seven-speed dual-clutch automatic.
0 to 60 mph is rated at 4.2 seconds.
The new M3 and M4 use a 3.0 liter turbocharged engine that produces 425 HP and 560 Nm (413 lb-ft) of torque. The weighs under 1,500 kg (3,300 lbs). From 0-100 km/h (0-62), the 2014 BMW M4 runs in 4.1 seconds with DCT while the M3 runs the same distance in 4.3 seconds, with the same transmission.
C&D tested the M4 with Launch Control at 3.9 seconds through 60 mph.
The 911 scoots to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds, just 0.3 second behind the M4 despite a power deficit that is roughly equal to one Mitsubishi Mirage. In our six-stop, 70-mph brake test, the standard iron-disc brakes proved every bit as resilient as the M4’s carbon-ceramics while producing a shorter, 144-foot stop. At 0.98 g, the Porsche matched the BMW in lateral grip.
So how did the 911 lose? By a narrow margin. In the objective scoring categories, it was dinged for its sparse equipment, slower acceleration times, larger price tag, and compromised practicality. We can forgive Porsche for the tiny rear seats, but surely the engineers in Weissach can carve out a space for a cellphone or a pair of sunglasses without making this tidy car any larger.
You’ll notice that the 911 took every one of our subjective chassis categories. The 911’s shortcomings have nothing to do with driving. If you can make peace with the fact that there’s at least one faster and cheaper German in town, the 911 experience is worth the price.