BMW just unveiled the M2 Competition, a significant upgrade to the already familiar M2. Sporting exclusive features inside and out and a turbocharged engine borrowed from the M4, the M2 Competition is a big step forward for the nameplate on the performance ladder and may open the door to a more track-prepped version in the future. With more than 400 horsepower at its disposal, the M2 Competition seems ready to take on the heavyweights of the performance market, starting with the Porsche 718 Cayman GTS. Does it have what it takes to go against Stuttgart’s mid-engined sports car? Let’s find out in the comparison below.
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BMW M5: Old vs. New
2017 brought us the new BMW 5 Series, so it’s only fitting that 2018 brings us a new M5. We must have been good this year because Santa came early, and with him, he brought a whole slew of updates that include an updated V-8, loads of new technology, BMW’s xDrive AWD system as standard (optional outside the U.S.,) a lighter chassis, and better performance. Talk about some good news, right? Truth be told, the M5 dropped as much as 127 pounds, has more aggressive styling, an updated interior with the latest infotainment system, and an extra 38 ponies and 51 pound-feet over the outgoing model – that brings total output figures up to 591 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque. It can now hit 62 mph in as little as 3.4 seconds and 124 mph in just 11.1 seconds. Of course, top speed is still pinned at 155 mph, unless you get the M Driver’s package, which increases the top speed to 189 mph.
Now, it’s set to take on other established beasts in the market that include the Mercedes-AMG E63, the Audi RS7, and the Cadillac CTS-V – I know, it’s not German, but this thing is seriously a beast, so don’t get caught slipping because it will eat you alive. With all this in mind, we decided to throw together a little infographic for the M5 to help bring its best features and qualities to the forefront. Check it all out in our visual comparison below.
Is the new BMW M5 a Waste of Money? Why not Just Get the M550i?
We’re fortunate enough to live in a world where brands like BMW take pride in their performance arms and like to apply M-power to just about everything. But, is it for everyone? Probably not. M-cars are typically much more expensive than the model that sits below them, but the tradeoff is usually lots of extra power and slightly more aggressive looks. Unless you’re one of those people that needs to have the best of everything, you could find yourself questioning whether or not the M5 is really for you, and I honestly can’t blame you. The new M5 comes just a year after the 5 Series transitioned into its seventh generation. With this transition, the 5 Series lost some weight (as much as 137 pounds) and came complete with some updated engine options that deliver better fuel economy and performance. On top of that, BMW finally decided to give the M5 all-wheel drive (standard in the U.S. but optional everywhere else) which is enough to bring it up to par with the competition from Audi and Mercedes. But, with a car like the BMW M550i xDrive resting just below the M5 in the lineup, do you really need to pony up for the M5?
Well, that’s not something I can answer directly, but I would be lying if I told you that the M550i didn’t have some intriguing points to back up why it just might be a better candidate. After all, the M550i is a gorgeous car with attractive and aggressive looks that make it stand out among its brethren, and it does have enough balls to compete on its own in most cases. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at why the M550i may be a better option for you and talk a little more about it.
What’s The Best Sporty Luxury Sedan You Can Get For Less Than $50K?
At its most basic, a sport sedan should be a happy balance between two competing philosophies. The “sport” half of the equation should make it engaging, both in the way it drives, and the way it looks. A sport sedan should issue a dose of adrenaline when the hammer is down, and be a willing dance partner in the corners. It’s also gotta draw attention, turning heads as it goes, making its owner pause momentarily after exiting and locking the doors. Then there’s the “sedan” bit. A sport sedan isn’t supposed to be stripped down and basic – practicality and comfort are paramount. Often used as a daily driver, backside coddling should be there in abundance, complementing the car’s speed potential, rather than taking away from it. All told, it’s a big ask, but this segment has plenty of contenders vying for the title of best. In this comparison, we look at six of the top entries and sort them out, from first to last.
Listed in alphabetical order, this comparison will take a look at the Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Chrysler 300, Infiniti Q50, Jaguar XE, and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. We’ve evaluated each in terms of exterior aesthetics, interior comfort and technology, powertrain and drivetrain specs, and chassis and handling. We’ve also included a glut of info in chart and graph form to help you make a quick comparison. So without further ado, let’s take a look at the best sporty luxury sedan you can get for less than $50,000.
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TopSpeed’s Top 5 Premium Wagons – 2017 Edition
At this point, it should be more than obvious that if you want a car with utility and space for at least five people, but don’t wanna join the crowd of crossovers you see crammed onto the roads, your best option is to get your hands on a wagon. Once a steadfast bastion of the practical, wagons have seen a sharp decline in popularity over the last few decades, the result of an all-out assault from the tall-bodied insanity of the current SUV craze. But fear not – the wagon hasn’t gone gently into that good night, at least not yet, and we’ve assembled five top-shelf options right here for your perusal and approval.
Rather than limiting ourselves to what’s currently available, we decided to look ahead in anticipation of what’ll be in dealers in the next year or so, including both existing offerings and those that have yet to be released. As it turns out, there are a few very strong entries barreling down the pipeline right now, which means buyers will have a nice selection of premium wagons when shopping in 2017.
So what’s topping the menu? Read on to find out.
Continue reading to learn more about TopSpeed’s Top 5 Premium Wagons for 2017.
I am testing a set of winter tires from Cooper Tire to see how much benefit a driver in the snow belt will receive, and so far I have learned a lot. With lots of ice, slush and just plain freezing temps on clear roads, I have discovered why winter tires are a smart purchase. That said, I really can’t give a full review of these tires unless I get a chance to test them in real heavy winter conditions. As it happens, Cooper was holding a winter-tire testing event in Canada, and our tires were on the list of included products.
I asked if I could follow the team up to Canada to give the tires a good flogging on ice and snow, and they were more than happy to oblige. As a bonus I got a chance to test out a new all-season tire that is supposed to be nearly as good as winter rubber in the snow, I was able to test a more performance-oriented SUV winter tire, and I even learned how to drift a BMW on ice. If you remember the mayhem that happened the last time I got to be a tire tester, well, it happened again. This time we killed a Jeep though, not a Corvette.
Continue reading to find out more about the Cooper Tire Winter Tire Testing Program
So, entry-level sports cars aren’t good enough. You make too much money to be seen in a Mazda MX-5 or a normal Ford Mustang. Your successful self needs something powerful and exciting. Well, there is plenty of choices in the market.
To be as precise as possible, there is actually an overwhelming amount of choices in the market, with each car being a little different. There are German performance coupes, American muscle, and Japanese street rockets. These machines have the same sort of mind-bending power, but the way each puts that power down is as different as Apollo and the Space Shuttle.
Due to that reason, we had a hard time putting machines like the Dodge Challenger in same category as the Porsche Boxster. How can you compare two machines that are so vastly different? Sure, we could have, but it just wouldn’t have worked. So, after the jump we have three - even though the title says ten - different top fives. The price cap is $60,000.
We broke it down like this. At the top we have four-door performance machines that use amazing power with epic grip and practicality. Then we have the coupes. Don’t get these coupes mixed up with the Corvette-type coupes because these European cars are tuned for a mixture of speed and cornering ability. Finally, we have the American straight road muscle. Cars that run the quarter miles as naturally as a sports analyst getting a prediction terribly wrong.
Hit the jump to read the lists.
You’ve finally got that big time job and you want something that isn’t too cheap, but you don’t want to spend $80,000 quite yet. There is much to choose from in the middle luxury segment and each car has it’s own unique characteristics that make it better, or worse than the competition.
Just like the entry-level luxury segment, the Germans have always had the middle levels to themselves. The Japanese and the American automakers have never been able to catch up. Yet, 2010 is a new year and things might be changing in the automotive marketplace.
Let’s take a look back at our previous winners before we begin with this list. We rated the Mini Cooper as the best small car and the Hyundai Sonata as the best midsize sedan. Finally, we rated the Audi A4 as the best entry-level luxury car on the market.
Hit the jump to see who we chose as the top mid-level luxury car.
As you have seen by now, we have a tendency to rank cars differently than other car sites. While we love practicality as much as the next site, at TopSpeed, we put speed, performance, and that certain sparkle above the size of the trunk and the back seat.
With entry-level luxury cars, finding the gems between the boring sales rep vehicles can be a pretty hard task. We have so many terribly dull sedans that are only good for taking you down the motorway to work and that’s about it. We aren’t looking for that. We don’t care about sales, we don’t care about popularity, we care about how these cars drive on the track and in the real world. We are aware that a point to point car is what most people will like, but we want an entry-level sedan that provides excitement on that everyday journey. Something that can make you smile and enjoy the drive home. A car that will make you take the back roads.
Over the course of this series we have jumped price by $10,000 each time, starting from $20,000 with the small cars and then $30,000 with the midsize. For this test, we are jumping by $15,000, to make the price cap at $45,000.
Hit the jump to see what our top ten entry-level luxury vehicles are.