Watch a Tesla Model 3 Put Up Solid Fight Against BMW M2 on the Nurburgring
Silent but deadly.
When you think of the kind of vehicles that call the Nurburgring home, your mind doesn't necessarily pop to electric automobile manufacturer Tesla. Instead, you typically wow your brows at the thought of BMWs, Porsches, and other high-dollar sports cars. So what happens when you pit two unlikely competitors against one another 'round the 'Ring?
As the video starts out, the all-electric sedan uses its instant-on torque to quickly eat the track as it exits an apex, overtaking nearly every car it comes across. The BMW is certainly agile around the twisties, using its near perfect chassis to handle the 'Ring, but there's no denying it lacks oomph in the straights.
The secret to the Model 3's performance is, in part, its switch-style torque. Thanks to a pair of electric motors powering all four wheels, the Tesla is able to deliver all 471 pound-feet of torque at a moment's notice. There's no need to wait for a turbo to spool up, no curve to reach optimal power band and no varying environmental conditions which might affect power output (unless it's awfully cold outside).
Advanced torque vectoring at each corner helps the Model 3 carve through turns despite its extra bloat, and its floor-mounted battery pack helps to promote stability by producing a low center of gravity.
One would think that the BMW's long racing heritage would give it a performance advantage—especially one of the German automaker's curated track monsters—and that's where they would be dead wrong. The M2 didn't even stand a chance against the weaker Model 3 AWD in a head-to-head drag race. Despite boasting 56 more horsepower and weighing nearly 500 pounds less, the M2 wasn't able to keep up in the short run.
The BMW M2 and Model 3 Performance do share some similarities in their offerings. For example, they're both performance-oriented and float closely within the same premium pricing segment. But that's largely where the resemblance ends. BMW's offering is a luxury sports coupe designed to be the ultimate driving machine, while the Tesla is often viewed as a peppy electric car with Autopilot that saves money on fuel.
Though these tests hardly qualify for anything that took place in a controlled environment, it's still exciting to see something that, for now, is outside of the norm. If anything, the Model 3 Performance's ability to show off might indicate a whole new era of performance in its infancy.