On paper, the BMW M2 and Nissan Z Nismo are competitors. Both are similarly priced compact performance coupes with rear-wheel drive and six-cylinder engines. They also happen to have automatic transmissions, although the non-Nismo Z is available with a stick. We can say the same for the M2 since you can have it with three pedals.

However, this new drag race goes to show that what’s written in the technical specifications doesn’t tell the whole story. Edmunds orchestrated one of its U-Drags, which is a bit different than a regular quarter-mile drag race. The cars turn around at the half-point and return to where they started. The M2 and Z Nismo went head to head, but there was a clear winner in both duels.

It didn’t take long for the smallest of the M cars to put the Z in the rearview mirror. Yes, the G87 has an extra 33 hp and 22 lb-ft over its competitor, but the gap is much bigger than these raw numbers would suggest. In addition, the BMW is also about 190 pounds (86 kilograms) heavier, which inevitably hurts performance.

Edmunds looked at the stats and discovered the M2 was much quicker in the sprint to 60 mph. The not-so-little BMW M car took 3.6 seconds whereas the Z needed 4.2 seconds. Bavaria’s sports car took 11.6 seconds to complete the quarter mile at a trap speed of 122 mph. As for Japan’s spicy coupe, it needed 12.3 seconds and crossed the finish line while doing 116.1 mph. The M2 completed the U-Drag in 34.1 seconds, or 1.7 seconds sooner than the Z Nismo.

We’d be curious to see how the lesser M240i fares against the Nismo. Chances are the two would be neck and neck. Lest we forget BMW also sells the M Performance version with all-wheel drive. Rumor has it the full-fat M2 will get the xDrive treatment around 2026.

Source: Edmunds Cars / YouTube