Should You Buy An M2 Or A Supra?

Motortrend Supra M2 Hot Lap

Put down your pitchforks—we know that the real cross-shopping comparison for a BMW enthusiast is the M2 versus the Z4 M40i. But now that the dyno tests of the Supra, which yielded some pretty astonishing power figures, have been translated to the track in Motortrend‘s Hot Lap Matchup, the Toyota is on our mind. Although it doesn’t say BMW on it, the B58 engine in at least a few Supra GR Launch Editions has been reported as developing serious power and torque when put on a dynamometer.

We know that the B58 is a remarkably potent engine, with the most powerful version used in cars like the Z4 M40i, the M340i, and the X3 M40i making 382 horsepower from 5,000 to 6,500 rpm and 369 pound-feet of torque from 1,600 to 4,500. The version fitted to the Supra isn’t quite as powerful, but still develops a more-than-respectable 335 horsepower over the same plateau, along with identical torque. When tested, however, the Supra developed significantly more—332 horsepower and 387 pound-feet of torque at the wheels—and those figures do not account for drivetrain loss.

Do the math, and the Supra has nearly 400 horsepower and over 450 pound-feet of torque—from a non-M engine.

The M2 Competition, on the other hand, was notable when it succeeded the original M2 because it upgraded from the N55 to the S55 M inline six. The M2 Competition uses a detuned version of the S55 compared to the unit in the M3 and M4, with the M2 Competition rated at 405 horsepower and nearly identical torque. Considering how other BMW engines have been measured to make more power than advertised, that should be more than enough to allow the M2 Competition to outperform the Supra where maximum performance counts: on the track.

But somehow this is not the case , at least not with an early build of the Supra in the Motortrend video below. Check out the clip to see the potential of a tuned BMW turbocharged and direct-injected inline six, and how it stacks up against a legitimate twin-turbo M engine. In the end, the M2 Competition seems to be the preferred car because of its composure on the road and around a circuit, but the power of the Supra simply can’t be overlooked.

This week news broke of the 2021 Toyota Supra gaining a four-cylinder engine choice and an updated version of the six-cylinder. The four-cylinder will be the 255-horsepower BMW B48, which packs 295 pound-feet of torque, while the B58 will be the same 382-horsepower M Performance variant discussed in detail above. Chassis tweaks and some other adjustments are part of the 2021 update, but the updated six-cylinder is even more justification for the unique BMW-Toyota cross that is the Supra.—Alex Tock

[Photo and video courtesy Motortrend.]

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