The Z4 may be living on borrowed time considering rumors are pointing toward a 2025 retirement, but it’s still one of the most fun-to-drive BMWs out there. It wasn’t developed to be the quickest at the drag strip as the roadster shines on a twisty road during a long trip in the summer with the roof down. Nevertheless, someone decided to pit the range-topping M40i against a Porsche 718 Cayman S in a quarter-mile test.
The first duel ended before it began because the BMW driver mistakenly put the eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission in reverse. In the second drag race, the mid-engined sports car from Zuffenhausen took no prisoners as it effortlessly beat the Bavarian soft-top roadster. Even though the Z4 M40i has a larger inline-six engine, the Cayman S’ four-pot makes a bit more horsepower (350 hp vs 340 hp) but it is down on torque (420 Nm vs 500 Nm).
The biggest difference between them is weight as the Porsche is nearly 200 kilograms (about 440 pounds) lighter. In addition, the Cayman has a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic whereas the Z4 uses an eight-speed torque-converter. Both send power to the rear wheels but the 2.5-liter engine of the coupe is mounted in the middle for better weight distribution.
The Porsche hit 62 mph (100 km/h) in 4.09 seconds and completed the quarter mile in 12.22 seconds at 114 mph (184 km/h) whereas BMW did the sprint in 4.61 seconds and crossed the finish line in 12.87 seconds at a trap speed of 176 km/h (109 mph).
Even though the Z4 M40i driver started the third race sooner than they should have, the Cayman S managed to close the gap and almost won the duel. The Porsche was the quicker car that day, with or without the Z4 driver’s mishaps.
It should be mentioned that much like the Z4, the Cayman as we know it is also going away. Porsche intends to replace the combustion-engined sports car with an EV around 2025. As for the BMW, the M40i could get a manual gearbox as a last hurrah before it’s phased out in roughly two years’ time.
Source: Cars with Pilot Tseno / YouTube