BMW i8 Versus Manual M4 Is the Year’s Hottest Drag Race

Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve gathered here today to find the answer to the question that has been on everyone’s mind ever since the M4 came out: is it faster than the i8?
BMW M4 vs BMW i8 1 photo
Photo: Screenshot from Youtube
Keeping the official tone aside, we’ve always wondered whether the i car could keep up with the fastest M one out there. For the moment, the M3/M4 duo represents the fastest cars BMW makes excepting the limited-edition 30 Jahre M5.

That being said, the numbers are a must in such a comparison. The guys from Auto Bild made a couple of mistakes in their video showing wrong figures for the two cars so here we are to the rescue.

The M4 comes with a 3-liter bi-turbo engine making 431 HP and 550 Nm (406 lb-ft) of torque and either a manual or automatic gearbox. Depending on the choice, the car will do 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.1 or 4.3 seconds, the slower time being attributed to the manual, of course. Furthermore, it’s all the more dependent on the driver that has to be really careful with the throttle.

That’s a problem you won’t get inside the M4 fitted with the 7-speed DCT box that comes with launch control

On the other hand, the i8 uses a hybrid powertrain made up of a 1.5-liter 3-cylinder turbocharged engine in the back, making 231 HP and 320 Nm (236 lb-ft) of torque and an electric one up front making 131 HP and 250 Nm (184 lb-ft) of torque.

The grand total rises to 362 HP and 570 Nm (420 lb-ft) of torque, all of it being transmitted over to the wheels thanks to a 6-speed slush box. BMW claims the 100 km/h (62 mph) sprint takes just 4.4 seconds.

Therefore, judging by the numbers the Bavarians provided, the M4 (which in this case is a manual) should be just slightly faster on the 1/4 mile. However, as we said, the driver makes a big difference.

On top of that, the i8 has all-wheel drive so it launches from a standstill a lot faster than the M car. Will the extra power in the M4 be enough to make it up in such a short run?

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