Which car should I buy? Porsche 718 Cayman v BMW M2 Competition

You send in the two cars you’re stuck on, we pick the one you should get

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“I’ve got $100K to spend on something fun. I don’t like open tops and I don’t want to be landed with a heap of depreciation. I’ve narrowed it down to used 718 Caymans and M2 Competitions. Help a brother out here.”
-JAMES R.

Solid choices, James. These are two of the very best performance coupes launched in recent years and choosing between them is tough.

They’re not alike in the way they feel though. The Porsche is an altogether more finessed thing and I reckon that the 2.0-litre turbo engine is a good ‘un and suits the car extremely well.

No, it doesn’t sound like the BMW’s S55 engine at the top of the rev range, but it makes far smarter use of the car’s gearing and natural pace than the more recent 4.0-litre atmo units. Cross country, I think that even though the Cayman’s a hefty 81kW down on the M2, there’d be little in it in terms of pace.

Much of this comes down to what you prioritise, whether you prefer the more exotic, precise feel of the Cayman or the arguably more exciting and slightly thuggish appeal of the M2.

If you choose to measure the cars purely in terms of the grin they put on your face as they go down a road, the BMW has to win. It’s quicker in a straight line, more dramatic in its power delivery and has that kind of infectious nature that makes you wonder how something like that can still be legal.

The Cayman could well offer a longer-lasting rosy glow of satisfaction due to the fact that it’s a specialist mid-engined sports coupe, and not the hotted-up version of a more proletarian shape.

Residuals will also be better for the Porsche, so it’s a genuinely tough decision.

For me, the BMW just squeaks it. And as good as the auto is, I suspect you’re going to choose one with three pedals.-AE

2017 Porsche 718 Cayman v 2018 BMW M2 Competition Specs

Engine: 1988cc, flat-four cylinder, DOHC, 16v, turbo | 2979cc, straight-six, DOHC, 24v, turbo
Power: 220kW @ 6500rpm | 301kW @ 5250-7000rpm
Torque: 380Nm @ 2150 – 4500rpm | 550Nm @ 2350 – 5200rpm
Weight: 1335kg | 1625kg
0-100km/h: 5.1sec (tested)| 4.3s
Price: $95,000 | $93,000

 

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