Top Gear: Tesla Model 3 goes head-to-head with BMW M3 [Video]

Top Gear recently took the Tesla Model 3 and BMW M3 out on the track in an attempt to see if Elon Musk's claims about Model 3's performance can actually be proved correct.

Above: Top Gear Magazine's May 2019 cover photo featuring Tesla Model 3 (Source: Top Gear)

The video which features multiple types of races between the two high-performance cars begins with a reference to Elon Musk's tweets from the launch of Model 3 Performance variant, almost a year ago! 

Elon Musk revealed the Model 3 Performance's initial specs and said it can beat any car in its class on the track, a bold assertion by the passionate CEO...

Above: Elon Musk's tweet on Tesla Model 3 Performance's track capability. (Twitter: Elon Musk)

Tesla Model 3 also made it to the cover of May's Top Gear Magazine (cover image above) along with a BMW M3 in the background and the headline explains:

"Electric beats Petrol, Tesla Model 3 outguns BMW M3, Elon wasn't tweeting nonsense (for once)"

It's important to remember that Top Gear doesn't have a great history when it comes Tesla. Nevertheless, they were able to be completely objective and admit that Model 3 is the clear winner here.

Above: A look at what happened when these two cars faced off against one another (Youtube: Top Gear)

Top Gear organized four races on the track between the two cars (a Tesla Model 3 Performance with 'Track Mode' and a BMW M3)  — 1/4 drag race, 0-100 mph & braking to 0, hot lap times, and drift-ability.

What happened? Tesla Model 3 won 3:1. The BMW M3 only edged out the Model 3 in the drifting arena. That said, with a software update, Tesla might be able to tweak its Track Mode in order to further improve the car's ability to drift.

In any event, let's go through some quick specs of both cars to better understand this showdown.

Above:  Tesla Model 3 vs. BMW M3 specs summary (Table: X Auto)

The Results

Drag Race: The winner Model 3 finishes in 11.9 secs @112.6 mph vs. BMW M3 crossing the line in 12.6 secs @119.1 mph.

0-100-0: Due to the instant acceleration of the Tesla Model 3, it was the clear winner here as well.

Hot Laps (standing start): With 'Track Mode' ON, the Tesla Model 3 handles a lot better as we witnessed in the video while the BMW M3 didn't even have a cool start in the third race. The BMW lost this race as well and couldn't beat Tesla's lap time of 1:34.07 secs with its 1:35.96 secs of performance.

Drift-ability: This is where the Model 3 couldn't quite match the BMW M3 but winning 3 races out of 4 is never a bad day for any car, electric or not!


Written by: Iqtidar Ali. An earlier version of this article originally appeared on X Auto.