Two sports cars, but with completely different pedigrees. In the left corner, we have a 1987 BMW 5 Series in the M535i specification. It’s the lesser of the two E28 flavors since the naturally aspirated straight-six engine only makes 182 horsepower and 214 pound-feet (290 Newton-meters) of torque. The 535i sold in Europe had considerably more oomph, packing 215 hp and 229 lb-ft (310 Nm) from its uprated 3.4-liter M30.
In the right corner, a Porsche 944 Turbo also from the same class of ’87. At its heart is a much smaller 2.5-liter four-banger, but with a turbocharger. Thanks to forced induction, the sports car from Zuffenhausen punches out 217 hp, thus making it considerably more powerful than the Bimmer. The folks over at The Fast Lane Classics lined them up for a drag race. Why? Because both were purchased for $18,000 and have a little over 100,000 miles on the odometer.
While the M535i was sourced from Japan, the 944 Turbo comes from Canada, but they’re both very German at heart. Coming from a time when cars were considerably smaller and lighter, the two feel tossable and nimble, eager to be thrown around in tight corners. Even if the BMW is not the full-fat M5 nor the beefier M535i variant, it still has what it takes to put a smile on your face.
The Porsche comes from a time when the company was having financial issues, but the engineers still knew how to make great cars. Being from the 1980s, it has an old-school turbocharger you can really feel whenever it kicks in compared to modern turbos that have a considerably linear power delivery.
In the track duel organized at the IMI Motorsports Complex is located in Dacono Colorado just north of Denver, the Porsche took the win, but not by much. The 944 Turbo also triumphed in the subsequent drag race, and this time, by a much bigger margin. Drag racing two 34-year-old cars takes a bit of courage since many things could go wrong mechanically, but we’re happy The Fast Lane Classics did it anyway.
Not only that, but they also had a separate 0-60 mph run with the M535i, which took 11.02 seconds. That’s certainly not quick by modern standards, but for the late 1980s, it was pretty decent. If only it had been the more potent version sold on the Old Continent rather than the weaker one markets such as US and Japan were stuck with.
[Source: TFLclassics / YouTube]