The new BMW M5 versus the Mercedes-AMG E63 S. Almost every journalistic publication has deliberated about this very topic every since these two cars have been on sale. However, this new video comparison from Autocar is probably the best, most complete and fairest assessment of both cars we’ve seen yet. Seriously, kudos to the folks at Autocar because they’ve managed to compare these cars as thoroughly and as fairly as we’ve seen yet.
Before the new BMW M5 debuted, the Mercedes-AMG E63 S was the best super sedan in the world. In fact, it was in contention for the best super sedan ever made. And it still is. It’s an astonishing car with monstrous amounts of power, more luxury than anyone could ever really ask for and all-weather capability while also having a two-wheel drive drift mode. It’s everything you could want from a car. Zero compromises.
Then the BMW M5 came out and uses, essentially, the very same formula. And as Autocar explains, if both brands are using the same formula, it’s likely because that’s the best way to do it. And now that the M5 is out, it’s a seriously difficult question to answer, whether or not it’s better than the mighty AMG.
Both cars are so similar in both spec and performance that it’s almost impossible to call. Both cars have twin-turbo V8s, 4.0 liter for the AMG and 4.4 liter for the BMW. Both make 600-plus horsepower, 603 for the AMG and 600 for the BMW. Both have conventional torque-converter automatic gearboxes, a nine-speed for the AMG and an eight-speed for the BMW. And both have all-wheel drive systems with rear-wheel drive modes.
We won’t even bother talking about straight-line performance because they’re both so close that, on any given day, one can beat the other. Tiny variables can sway the race in either direction. So what’s more important, and what Autocar talks about in this video, is how both cars drive. So which is better?
Well, it’s interesting. The AMG, with its incredible V8 roar and ever-so-slightly more exciting feel, seems like the more thrilling car. It’s the louder, angrier, more brutal car of the two, in terms of its delivery and driving feel. While the BMW M5, which is still incredibly violent and powerful, is a bit more comfortable and more refined. So it really comes down to personal preference.
In the end, Autocar chooses the BMW M5 as the better of the two. It’s better at both ends of the spectrum, as they say in the video, being that it can be a monster on the track as well as super comfortable everyday. While the AMG can do both as well, the BMW M5’s reach is further on both ends and, therefor, it’s the better all-around car. If you just want a sedan to be thrilling and angry, then maybe the AMG is the better car of the two. But the BMW is the better car of the two, albeit by a hair. Watch the video, though, it’s worth listening to their reasoning.