In the age of electrification, the manual gearbox is sadly a dying breed but there are still a few sports cars available with three pedals. Codenamed G87, the second-generation BMW M2 happens to be one of them, albeit BMW sells the car in some markets exclusively with the eight-speed Steptronic automatic gearbox. In this new drag race, the Bavarian coupe in three-pedal configuration was pitted against the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 in a Germany vs. US showdown.

To even the odds, the Camaro also had a six-speed manual routing power to the rear axle. Although both are high-performance coupes with do-it-yourself transmissions and RWD, they’re still quite different. The M2 has a twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline-six whereas the ZL1 rocks a supercharged 6.2-liter V8. In addition, the BMW is much smaller than the Chevrolet, even though this new G87 is not the “baby M” car like the F87 and especially the 1 Series M Coupe before it.

The M2 is notably down on power as it has to make do with “only” 453 hp and 406 lb-ft (550 Nm) whereas the Camaro with its brawny V8 pushes out 650 hp and 650 lb-ft (884 Nm) but it’s also over 100 pounds (about 45 kilograms) heavier. Folks interested in cross-shopping these two coupes should know you’ll be paying more for the Chevy (from $73,695) than the BMW (from $63,200), but the price gap will likely vanish with the release of the hotter M2 CS next year.

The first duel was a rolling race from 31 mph (50 km/h) in second gear that ended with a win for the ZL1. The gap was even bigger in the subsequent rolling race from 44 mph (70 km/h) in second gear. The BMW also lost the drag race as the Chevy completed the quarter mile in 12.2 seconds or 0.4s quicker than its rival. The Camaro took 3.8 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standstill, or 0.1s less than the M2.

The outcome isn’t all too surprising given the ZL1’s power advantage thanks to the bigger engine, and it’ll be interesting to see how the CS with over 500 hp will fare against the Chevy. However, we’re hearing BMW intends to sell the spicy M2 exclusively with an automatic.

Source: Sam CarLegion / YouTube