BMW’s Hardcore M3 CS Goes Up Against The Audi RS4 – And The Winner Is…

What’s better, all-wheel drive or rear-wheel drive? It’s an age-old question to which there’s no single right answer. When it comes to performance cars, however, many people have strong views for both.

Some claim that all-wheel drive takes away from the raw driving experience necessary for a vehicle to be a proper driver’s car. Other says that all-wheel drive for high-performance cars is a perfect fit because it allows you to explore all that performance more of the time and, crucially, more safely.

No matter which side of the argument you sit, this clip showing the new BMW M3 CS competing against the Audi RS4 is unlikely to change your opinion but rather cement it. The two are that close from a performance standpoint.

The team at CarWow recently pitted the duo together for a series of tests, including a standing quarter mile, a rolling drag race, and a high-speed brake test. We won’t ruin the results for you but it is a very close fight between the rear-wheel drive M3 CS and the all-wheel drive RS4.

The M3 CS is powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-liter straight-six delivering 454 hp and 443 lb-ft (600 Nm) of torque. It also weighs 50 kg (110 lbs) less than the standard car thanks to the comprehensive use of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic parts. All told, BMW’s compact performance sedan sprints to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 3.9 seconds and hits a 173 mph (280 km/h) top speed.

By comparison, the RS4 has a 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6 pumping out 444 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque. Audi claims a 0-62 mph (100 km/h) time of 4.1 seconds, however based on this review, that time seems somewhat conservative.

The two were subjected to a drag race both from a standstill and a rolling start, as well as a brake test. Moreover, as they were on a track, they couldn’t resist to taking them around and see how each handles. The verdict? Well, what do you think?


  • Bo Hanan

    Tired of watching “M” quickly mean nothing in the world of performance series cars.
    Now “M” only impresses BMW owner’s of non “M” cars.

    • ksegg

      M basically became a trim level.

      Just like AMG did.

      The world of really SPECIAL cars imo, is now limited to cars that start at $150K+.

      M, RS, AMG – pick your trim level, because although these three still make great cars, none of them are special anymore. If that makes sense.

  • charlie bear

    Only an RS can beat an RS.

  • Daniela Wolf

    Next time u better compare a wagon to a Avant wtf….

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