BMW M850i xDrive vs. M3 Competition: Drag Race Showdown

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BMW M850i xDrive vs. M3 Competition: Drag Race Showdown

The M850i xDrive, often overlooked compared to its M8 counterpart, showcases impressive performance credentials thanks to its robust V8 powerplant and finely tuned launch control system.

Recently captured on a German runway, the M850i xDrive demonstrates its agility by accelerating from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour (97 kilometers per hour) in just 3.7 seconds while conquering the quarter-mile sprint in 11.76 seconds.

These remarkable figures are particularly noteworthy considering the vehicle’s weight, although it’s important to acknowledge that BMW’s technology-laden M3 also carries a substantial mass.

Specifically, the M3 Competition, weighing in at 1,765 kilograms (3,891 pounds), slightly undercuts the M850i xDrive, which tips the scales at 2,008 kilograms (4,427 pounds).

BMW M850i xDrive vs. M3 Competition: Drag Race Showdown

In head-to-head comparisons, the D-segment sedan, represented by the M3 Competition, narrowly outperforms the M850i xDrive. Recorded times by Kamal Awsse of KaRace illustrate this, with the M3 Competition achieving a 3.6-second sprint and an 11.75-second quarter-mile time, marginally quicker than its counterpart.

However, launching the M3 Competition presents a slightly greater challenge, as evidenced by separate race results showing times of 4.2 and 11.92 seconds, compared to 3.9 and 11.92 seconds for the M850i xDrive.

Both models, built on BMW’s CLuster ARchitecture platform, exhibit comparable performance characteristics, even from a rolling start. Despite its prowess, the M850i xDrive falls short of being considered a true M car, primarily due to its utilization of the N63 twin-turbo V8 engine.

In contrast, the M3 Competition utilizes an S-series engine derived from the B58, both of which are known to be underrated by BMW. Notably, even the Toyota GR Supra 3.0, equipped with the B58 engine, surpasses its advertised power and torque figures.

While BMW currently has no immediate plans to replace the B58 and S58 engines, there are indications that the N63 and S63 engines are nearing the end of their lifecycle. The upcoming S68 engine, despite sharing the same 4.4-liter V8 configuration, boasts significant differences, particularly with hybrid assistance expected.

This hybrid technology is anticipated to be incorporated into models like the upcoming M5, which is slated to deliver over 700 horsepower and weigh more than two metric tons due to onboard charging systems and high-voltage batteries.

Looking ahead, BMW is rumored to introduce a new generation of the 8 Series in 2026, with production expected to commence in July of that year.

However, reports suggest that only the 8 Series Gran Coupe will receive a successor, with speculation pointing towards an electric sedan based on the Neue Klasse platform rather than the existing CLuster ARchitecture.

As for the 3 Series, another iteration powered by internal combustion engines is anticipated on the CLuster ARchitecture platform, alongside the highly awaited Neue Klasse i3.

Production of the G50 sedan and G51 wagon variants could commence in November 2026, potentially leading to the creation of the NA0 sedan and NA1 wagon variants, which could serve as the basis for the ZA0 M3 and ZA1 M3 Touring models.

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