TopGear.com11 August 2014

Car Clinic: BMW M3 vs BMW M5

Which of these two twin-turbo Bavarian super saloons is the one to buy? Your questions answered…

You asked: Dear Car Clinic, I'd been reading up about the current BMW M5 as I was thinking of buying one, when I heard about the latest M3 also having a twin-turbo. Which is best?

We answered: You're right, there are similarities between the two Bee-Emms. The M5 is, of course, bigger than the M3, but not so much as you might think. And both RWD saloons have similar driving characteristics: both are softer, more rounded than the cars they replace.

Even so, we think this is an easy one to sort. We've always found the current M5 a little on the large, heavy side. The M3 isn't much smaller, but sits four in comfort, has a boot that's only 40 litres smaller and is nearly £18k cheaper.

It also drives with more verve and precision. We'd have M3 over M5 every day of the week.

Specs

BMW M3
Price: £56,175
Engine: 2979cc straight six twin turbo, 431bhp, 406lb ft
Performance: 0-62mph in 4.3 seconds, 155mph, 32.1mpg

BMW M5
Price: £73,960
Engine: 4395cc V8 twin turbo, 560bhp, 502lb ft
Performance: 0-62mph in 4.4 seconds, 155mph max, 28.5mpg

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