Pitting a BMW M3 Competition against a car like the Volkswagen Golf R might seem like the sort of David vs Goliath face-offs at first. And it kind-of is, but there’s a bit more to these two cars than meets the eye, because in the automotive world, power isn’t the only thing that matters. You also need control. In this case, we’re looking at a rear-wheel drive BMW M3 Competition model, one of the first to be made and that may be tricky to launch.  Or is it?

Well, by now, we’ve seen a lot of launches done by the M3 Competition, even in rear-wheel drive guise. Every time, the BMW managed to put the power down rather well. Sure, it’s not as efficient as an all-wheel drive model, but for a car with 510 PS (503 horsepower) going to the rear axle alone, it’s pretty darn good nonetheless. That would’ve been the main advantage the Golf R holds over the M3 in normal conditions but with the new generation, BMW really upped its game in this regard.

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On the specs’ side of things, it seems pretty obvious that the Golf has an uphill struggle here. It uses a 2.0 liter four-cylinder turbo petrol engine, good for 320 PS (315 horsepower) and 420 Nm (310 lb-ft) of torque. It uses a dual-clutch gearbox and an all-wheel drive system to get around. Normally, this is a pretty fast car off the line but you have to remember what monster hides on the other side of the drag strip.

That would be the M3 Competition with its 3.0 liter straight-six, twin-turbo engine, making 510 PS (503 horsepower) and 650 Nm (479 lb-ft) of torque. It may be sending all its power to the rear wheels through an 8-speed automatic gearbox but, as we’ve already mentioned, it does so brilliantly. The M3 is also about 200 kilos heavier but, when you consider the nearly 200 horsepower difference between the two, you realize there can only be one winner.