Battle of the 3s: BMW M3 vs Tesla Model 3 Performance, Is One Really “Better”?

“Inevitable,” you might say, and you’d be right. The instant torque of an electric car will always leave a comparable ICE (internal combustion engine) car in the dust – at least for the first quarter-mile. This time, the tech-savvy Model 3 Performance was pitted against the elegant BMW M3 with the competition package, and the Model 3 won hands down in two races.

Here’s the video:

If you watch until about 5:55 in the video, you’ll also see the Model 3 Performance race against the McLaren 720S. Of course, that’s in a different class so the Model 3 didn’t stand a chance, but it didn’t do all that badly, either.

Which Car is Better: The BMW M3 or the Tesla Model 3 Performance?

As for comparing the M3 with the P3D, it’s not as easy as an apples to oranges comparison. The powertrains are different, for starters. An all-electric versus a purebred ICE. The P3D is like a high-tech butterfly, while the M3 is more like a worker bee.

Both are powerful cars, no doubt, with the electric car putting out 450 hp and the gas-driven M3 pushing 425 hp. And both are nearly equally priced when you factor out any incentives for the P3D.

But in real-world conditions, which car would you prefer? It probably boils down to a few staple factors that all consumers use in their purchase decision: Is it unique? Does it make a statement? Is it spacious enough for my needs? Is it good for long distances as well as running errands? …and so on.

That’s where the comparisons really start to highlight the differences between the two cars. For example, i0f0 you’re a regular on the track and don’t want to end up spending a ton of cash on replacing parts sooner than they need, then the M3 is the obvious choice because it’s more suited to the track. But not everyone buying an M3 or a P3D is a track enthusiast, and that’s something you can’t ignore.

On the other hand, pure EVs like the Model 3 Performance are ZEVs, or zero emission vehicles – huge point to consider. Besides, the charging infrastructure in the U.S. – helped adequately by Tesla’s own Supercharger network – is wide enough and dense enough to get your Model 3 from anywhere to anywhere, practically.

Is either of the cars better than the other? No, unless you have specific parameters that define the “goodness” of a car. They’re both great cars, but the P3D is decidedly the future of an auto industry that has already decided that it’s going fully electric in the next couple of decades.

And I guess that’s what it boils down to in the end: are you part of the future or do you want to live in the past a little while longer?