Who doesn’t like dyno tests? Miserable people, that’s who, or perhaps low-down dirty miscreants who have shoved Iron Dukes into their GTOs. The rest of us always enjoy the cold, hard truth that a dyno wrings out of cars, and today we’d like to share this comparison of a 2018 BMW M3 with the Competition Package and a regular 2018 BMW M4.

You may be thinking, wait, wait, isn’t that the same engine in those two cars? That 3.0-liter turbo straight-six? Well, pretty much, but this test shows how much the Competition Package—which for about five grand extra gives you an improved chassis, suspension, steering, lighter seats, a tweaked limited-slip differential and more power—translates into real thrust.

So, according to BMW, the M3 Competition should be making 444 horsepower, up from a base of 425. I’m curious to see how many of those horses get sacrificed on the way to the wheels.

The M4 should make 425 HP; again, it’ll be interesting to see the losses to the wheels here, too. Okay, let’s watch already and see what happens:

Huh. Interesting, right? Here’s the results—and I rounded up if tenths digit was 5 or above, like these guys should have:

M4: 386 HP, 406 lb-ft of torque

M3 comp pass one: 391 HP, 403 lb-ft of torque

M3 comp pass two: 402 HP 414 lb-ft of torque

Then, they tested the M3 with a higher octane fuel, and got a very nice jump in both power and torque: 418 HP and 432 lb-ft. That’s not too bad—under 40 HP of drivetrain loss from engine to wheels for the M3 competition, and about 36 for the M4.


Really, if these dyno videos tell us anything, it’s a reminder that almost every specified performance number for a car is a really just a representative out of a range, and there’s so many, many factors that can affect things.

I’m not saying MPG and horsepower numbers are a lie, but, you know, they sort of are.