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The war in the super-coupe sector seems to be a cyclical process. But with quattro four-wheel-drive traction, the Audi could have an advantage. BMW has also updated its M4. They were introduced as part of an update earlier this year to the 4 Series range, and BMW says they bring out even more dynamic ability.
The Audi RS 5 boasted stunning performance, but was a little short on fun.
With those adaptive dampers in their softest setting, the RS 5 is the best-riding car here. It moves with more fluidity over rutted and rolling B-ro, serving up much greater compliance than the C The cabin is creak-free, too, and in Comfort mode the powertrain offers refinement to match the ride. Combined with the Sport differential, it aids agility, plus acceleration off the line.
This huge traction meant the RS 5 was the fastest car from mph, taking 3. With one more gear in its eight-speed automatic box than its rivals, it was also faster over our in-gear assessments. The 5. Mercedes-AMG is on form. Its four-wheel-drive E 63 saloon offers supercar pace, while the rear-wheel-drive-only C 63 saloon and Coupe models deliver an amazing level of involvement and personality alongside thrilling dynamics. In gear it lagged a little behind the Audi, but it was in effect on par with or undercut the BMW, thanks to a brutal Nm of torque produced low down from just 1,rpm.
This is evident in the set-up, because the C 63 feels firmer than its rivals, even in the softest of the three dampers settings. The damping is harsher, but this is all relative because the AMG is still fairly comfortable on a cruise. Mercedes includes a free driver training experience to explore the limits in safety. These messages are relayed in plenty of clarity in the firmest of the three modes, controlling roll and ruling body movements rigidly.
However, in the softest setting it feels more compliant than the Mercedes, with easily as much agility. Still, with launch control the M4 covered mph in 4. Between 50 and 70mph in the higher gears there was nothing in it between the M4 and C 63, although the AMG had the edge between 30 and 50mph thanks to its greater torque.
The changes are subtle, but just enough to edge it ahead of the Mercedes. With its extra power, the Competition package nicely balances ferocity and friendliness. Be in no doubt that the ballistic V8 gives the AMG a huge personality and incredible performance.
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THE M4 COMPETITION