BMW took its sweet time releasing the M3 Touring but when the G81 finally came, it delivered the goods. It’s basically the best all-rounder from the Munich-based marque, and although it’s a wagon, it can hold its own around a race track. Its archrival, the Mercedes-AMG C63 Estate, is now merely a shadow of its former glory, having been demoted from a big V8 to a hugely intricate four-cylinder plug-in hybrid.

The French journalists at Motorsport Magazine took the fast AMG wagon to the Nevers Magny Cours Club track where the long-roof C63 needed 1 minute and 23.32 seconds to complete a lap. Predictably, it was slower than Bavaria’s G81, which crossed the finish line 1.38 seconds quicker. It’s worth noting the AMG had Pilot Sport 4S tires while the M Touring tested a while back had Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, which are generally considered the wiser choice on a dry track surface.

The C63 virtually matched the lap time of the A45 S compact hot hatch, which was also tested with the PS4S rubber. Motorsport Magazine also did a hot lap with the M3 CS, and the super sedan was substantially quicker. Running on Cup 2 tires, the performance saloon took only 1 minute and 20.49 seconds to do the job. It was 1.16 seconds faster than the M3 Touring. That gap is likely to decrease in 2025 when BMW is believed to come out with a CS version of the fast wagon.

In case you’re unfamiliar with this track, the Nevers Magny Cours Club Circuit is 2.53 meters long with 15 turns and a 700-meter straight line. The fastest car ever tested by Motorsport Magazine was the McLaren Senna with Trofeo R tires, which lapped the circuit in only 1 minute and 14.93 seconds.

It’ll be interesting to see how much faster the new M5 Touring is going to be. Yes, the G99 will have an advantage of roughly 200 horsepower over the M3 Touring but it’s likely to be much heavier as well. The M division is installing a complex plug-in hybrid V8 that will certainly come with a major weight penalty.

Source: Motorsport Magazine / YouTube