The tiny and super fun to drive Mazda MX-5 challenges some big boys to a straight-up drag race. So who are those big boys? One is the BMW fans’ favorite E46 M3, while the other is the all-new Jaguar XE S.

Three cars, yet all quite different. The MX-5 is powered by a 1.8 liter engine rated at 126 bhp (94 kW) and 167 Nm (123 lb-ft), coupled to the 5-speed manual transmission.


Powered by a 3.2 liter naturally aspirated engine producing 343 horsepower, the BMW E46 M3 could sprint from 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.1 s for manual and SMG; the cabriolet version takes 5.5 seconds for the same sprint. With a 250km/h (155mph) electronically limited top speed, the E46 M3 could also go fast. Really fast.

The 3.0 liter V6 in the XE S makes a healthy 340 hp and 332 lb-ft of torque, and on paper, it runs to 100 km/h in 5.1 seconds.

While it’s not the most accurate and scientific drag race we’ve seen, it’s quite fun to watch. So can the little MX5 play with the big boys? Let’s find out.