Watch the BMW M4 set a blistering lap time at Hockenheim.
While the BMW M4 has been maligned for its polarizing design direction, it's no slouch in the performance department and is even more fun to drive than its predecessor. To find out how well it performs on the track and see how it compares to the competition, Sport Auto took the M4 Competition xDrive for a spin around the Hockenheim circuit in Germany in a timed hot lap. Thanks to the helmet camera, we get to see the hot lap from the driver's perspective, giving you a front-seat view of the action.
As it tears around the German circuit, the M4 Competition looks beautifully balanced, blisteringly fast, and remarkably responsive.
The tail kicks out a few times as the M4 understeers but the driver keeps it under control and understeer was minimal. Crossing the line, the M4 Competition lapped the circuit in one minute and 53.9 seconds. Impressively, the lap time matched the Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 and the Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster, two of the best track-capable German sports cars on the market. It was also faster than a Porsche Taycan Turbo (1:54.1), BMW M5 Competition (1:54.2), Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 (1:54.6), and Audi R8 V10 Spyder Performance (1:55.2).
Under the hood, the BMW M4 Competition xDrive is powered by a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged inline-six sending 503 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque to all four wheels. Paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, this setup enables the sports coupe to sprint from 0-60 mph in 3.4 seconds and max out at 180 mph with the M Performance package.
For comparison, the Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 utilizes a 4.0-liter flat-six producing 414 horsepower and 309 lb-ft of torque, which is sent to the rear wheels through either a six-speed manual or a seven-speed automatic PDK dual-clutch transmission. With the automatic, the 718 Cayman GT4 will hit 0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds and a top speed of 189 mph.
The 718 Cayman GT4 may be down on power compared to the M4 Competition, but, crucially, it's also significantly lighter, which is why both cars set identical lap times. The fact the heavier four-seat BMW M4 was able to keep up with the two-seat Cayman GT4 sports car is very impressive, cementing its reputation as a true driver's car. Next year, BMW will launch the new lightweight M4 CSL, so it will be interesting to see how it compares to the new hardcore Cayman GT4 RS on the track.