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      03-18-2020, 03:43 PM   #1
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M2C vs ZL1 (using M240 as a reference)

So just being honest I have owned many Camaros and in fact, currently own a 02 SS. But I drove an M240 during a business/vacation in Germany and really liked it even though it had snow tires and my other half giving me side-eyes on the autobahn

I also own a 15 S1000R and its been the best bike I've owned so BMW has worked out for me.

But back to the 240 and from what I've read it sounds like the M2C would have enhancements that I might like? I am also curious how much it costs to maintain one if I was going to run a track day once a year and drive it on public roads as a second car? I've seen some of the maintenance recommendations for the ZL1 and I am not sure I want to deal with all of the fluid changes from both a cost and time standpoint. I am also curious about fuel mileage with the DCT on the highway and it's not being pushed? During my trip, I spent a lot of time in no speed limit zones so I really have no idea what the cars fuel mileage would be here. Also, I am pretty sure telling my girlfriend the fuel economy was just bad because of the turbo wasn't actually believed

I am aware of the significant difference in power between the two cars but even my 02 SS with 350 HP is more power than I can really do anything with on public roads. Pushed to its limits I am well above the speed limit, somewhere past an actual speeding ticket and towards "please get in the back of the squad car".

Plus it seems like the more power you have the more stuff you end up breaking, wearing out or having to futz with.
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      03-18-2020, 05:21 PM   #2
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Just get a car that makes you happy. The end.
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      03-19-2020, 02:42 AM   #3
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I've never driven a ZL1, but I bet it would be a lot faster. It's also much bigger and you'd have to drive at pretty insane speeds to have fun with it on the street.

The M2C would make a better track car than the M240, you basically get a little bit more straight line speed with an engine that revs to 7600 RPM, big brakes, a wider track front and rear, stiffer suspension (non-adjustable in the M2/M2C) and an electronically locking rear differential. The M2C also has a ton of cooling which is nice.

It's a fun car to drive on the street, it feels fast but not overwhelming and it loves to wag its tail in a controllable manner when you're just playing around.

Obviously I bought one so i'm biased, but I do really like my car. A lot of that was the size factor on the Camaro as well as the poor visibility out of that car. However, as 5.Monster said
"get a car that makes you happy." They're both cool cars.
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      03-20-2020, 04:03 PM   #4
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OP, the 240 is a fine car but the M2C is another another level in literally every single aspect. So you have to keep that in mind when using the 240 as a baseline. It would be like comparing a V6 with a ZL1. This is what i wrote on the 240 forums, it really ruffled a bunch of feathers but in the end, the facts don't care about your feelings.

Two days ago i dropped off my M2C at the dealership for the dreaded airbag recall. I've had just about every loaner from BMW from X1/X2s to a 640GT. Surprisingly, I got a 2019 m240i Xdrive this time around. Thought I would share my experience.

The good: The car has a peppy little motor. In Sport +, the car burbles and pops a little, which surprised me a bit. The suspension is geared toward comfort over sport. It really was the first thing i noticed. My mother in law appreciated it. The car does tend to lean into corners but overall it isn't bad. The chassis is stiff and the car felt solid going over bumps. The ZF 8 speed is really good too. Shifts gears quickly, downshifts well and holds gears when up shifting. Definitely suites the car. A DCT would be too jerky for this type of car.

The not so bad: The interior, while overall isn't horrible, doesn't feel like a car in this price bracket. The seats, while supportive, don't hug you anywhere near like the M2C. Oddly enough, the M2C's seats are actually much more comfortable too. The interior on the M2C has alcantara and deviated stitching, as well as the new instrument gauges, which make a noticeable difference. In terms of straight line performance, compared to the M2C, it's probably closer to 50 or 60% of the sensation you feel when accelerating. I am guessing this is because the S55 has a ton of low end torque. It's not bad as the car is fairly zippy around town but not really comparable when off the line.

The ugly: The brakes. Coming from a M2C or really any other sports car, the brakes feel inadequate. There isn't enough initial bite and it makes modulating the pedal a guessing game until you become familiar with it.
I'm not a fan of the narrow body, it makes the car look too boring, like any other car rather than anything special. However, there is a plus in this, it makes parking a ton easier lol. I think it's totally odd looking at the side view mirrors and not seeing the huge fender flares.
The wheels, while have a decent design, are way too small & narrow. They don't fill the arches enough.

The Cliff Notes version: The m240i is a nice, fun little car that is designed for comfort over sport. The car is solid and zippy. The two cars are opposite ends of the spectrum, one is made for comfort that you can enjoy around town while the other is a little monster that is made for the track. I think the best BMW comparison would be a 430i & a M4 with ZCP.
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      03-20-2020, 08:39 PM   #5
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When I drove the M2C and the 240 at the Performance Center in SC, the instructors said there is a 1/2 second difference between the cars in the slalom course. My times reflected that. I loved the M2C, but I donít know if itís worth a 1/2 second. On the street, there is NO difference between them.
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      03-22-2020, 04:54 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by 9t2hoo View Post
When I drove the M2C and the 240 at the Performance Center in SC, the instructors said there is a 1/2 second difference between the cars in the slalom course. My times reflected that. I loved the M2C, but I donít know if itís worth a 1/2 second. On the street, there is NO difference between them.
Half a second on a short Auto X course is a BIG Difference....
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      03-23-2020, 11:36 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by 9t2hoo View Post
On the street, there is NO difference between them.
There is an absolute massive difference between them on the street. I've literally driven both back to back.
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      03-23-2020, 12:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 9t2hoo View Post
When I drove the M2C and the 240 at the Performance Center in SC, the instructors said there is a 1/2 second difference between the cars in the slalom course. My times reflected that. I loved the M2C, but I donít know if itís worth a 1/2 second. On the street, there is NO difference between them.
LOL!

DCT or stick vs. 8 speed auto
S55 vs N55, or B58 (S55 is a M Engine)
Major suspension changes
No Heat Soak at Driving events
Brakes
Electronic Rear Diff
ETC, ETC, ETC>...

Sounds like the M240 is all the car you will ever need...
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      03-25-2020, 01:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEAT TIME RULES View Post
LOL!

DCT or stick vs. 8 speed auto
S55 vs N55, or B58 (S55 is a M Engine)
Major suspension changes
No Heat Soak at Driving events
Brakes
Electronic Rear Diff
ETC, ETC, ETC>...

Sounds like the M240 is all the car you will ever need...
Ok, let's not get our panties in a bunch and act like it's a night and day difference between the 2 cars on the street

On the street:
DCT vs 8 speed - goes to 8 speed. Smoother starts and low speed shifts around town. Real drivers get the MT anyway

S55 vs N vs B. - Most people won't notice. Some will feel 70hp difference every now and then, but most will just notice the GOD awful sound of the S55. So tie ... at best.

Brakes - no difference noticeable on the street since big brakes vs blue brakes stop the same in the first 5-6 stops. Tie. Might notice less weight light to light even, so I'm being generous here. On a road course, kudos to big brakes tho.

Active Diff - win for the M2.

Suspension - On the steer it's a mute point, since you can't drive either car fast enough on the street to tell

Better cooling - again, on the street a mute point. On the track makes a big difference in favor of the M2C.

Overall though, it's pretty damn close. Against M240 it comes down to extra 70hp at the cost of sounding like a weed whacker. And the active Diff, which is pretty sweet. The rest it mute. Take your pick.

So let's be real here.
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      03-25-2020, 04:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5.M0NSTER View Post
S55 vs N vs B. - Most people won't notice. Some will feel 70hp difference every now and then, but most will just notice the GOD awful sound of the S55. So tie ... at best.
Most people drive boring cars, so you are probably correct.

However, it is disingenuous to pretend that +70hp is an inconsequential difference, especially among a community of enthusiasts. Some people void the warranties on their cars to get those kinds of gains.
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      03-25-2020, 10:56 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5.M0NSTER View Post
Ok, let's not get our panties in a bunch and act like it's a night and day difference between the 2 cars on the street

On the street:
DCT vs 8 speed - goes to 8 speed. Smoother starts and low speed shifts around town. Real drivers get the MT anyway

I've driven a RWD 6 spd M240 its a great car. I could care less that in auto form its smoother :-)

S55 vs N vs B. - Most people won't notice. Some will feel 70hp difference every now and then, but most will just notice the GOD awful sound of the S55. So tie ... at best.

I really don't want to revisit the N55 vs the S55 debate. The S55 with a AA Midpipe gets rid of the weedwacker rasp. I do love the N55's sound over the S55. The S55 is superior in almost every single measurable way otherwise. Try getting more than 400WHP out of the N55 w/o spending lots of money.

Brakes - no difference noticeable on the street since big brakes vs blue brakes stop the same in the first 5-6 stops. Tie. Might notice less weight light to light even, so I'm being generous here. On a road course, kudos to big brakes tho.

Good point, if you never track your M240.

Active Diff - win for the M2.

Yes it is. One of my major complaints until recently was not being able to option in a Rear Diff in any BMW's except M Cars. What an embarrassment for BMW to ignore this for so many years.

Suspension - On the steer it's a mute point, since you can't drive either car fast enough on the street to tell

Drive them both on the street and tell me you can't notice the difference? You don't have to drive 10/10's to know which one is an M car.

Better cooling - again, on the street a mute point. On the track makes a big difference in favor of the M2C.

Yes it does, including your M2's cooling system. I've overheated a Turbo motor during a Time trial. Expensive. One of the many reasons I waited for the M2C.

Overall though, it's pretty damn close. Against M240 it comes down to extra 70hp at the cost of sounding like a weed whacker. And the active Diff, which is pretty sweet. The rest it mute. Take your pick.

Depends who the owner/driver is...I've been HPDE instructor for almost 20 years now. The M240 is a very solid fun street car for the majority of BMW drivers. I don't see many at HPDE's... Why is that?

So let's be real here.
If your a true enthusiast, reality is a M2
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      03-26-2020, 02:03 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEAT TIME RULES View Post
If your a true enthusiast, reality is a M2
On this we agree.

I have not yet overheated my M2 on track. The European versions come with an extra auxiliary cooler, so perhaps that is why. But either way I will not be adding power because I realize the cooling system is the weak link.
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      03-26-2020, 06:09 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bumpinjeep View Post
There is an absolute massive difference between them on the street. I've literally driven both back to back.
I agree; I can't fathom how anyone would say there is no difference in the two cars on the street. The M240i is a much softer riding, rolls more in cornering, feels sloppy in every aspect of driving feel compared to the M2C. I've driven an M240i in two different autocross events, and its just a completely different experience compared to the M2C. Night and day difference. Then again, I've been autocrossing since 1975 and track driving since 1981, so my internal evaluation meter is likely calibrated a lot differently than the average M240i owner.

The comparison, argument, whatever you want to call it reminds me of the old days in the E39 world. There were many who had a 540i/6 (540i sport package with 6 speed manual) claiming it was almost the same as the E39 M5, and internet battles ensued. Even with all the facts on the table, it didn't matter to those cemented in their 540i beliefs. I couldn't get on the waitlist at either of my two local dealers for at least 9+ months to order an M5 (this is 2001), used M5s were selling for their MSRP or more, so I ordered a 540i/6MT hoping it would suffice. After owning it a few months, I had long list of things I wanted to modify starting with the suspension and adding an LSD. I stopped those thoughts and went M5 hunting. I ended up owning both cars for a number of months, so I could do any comparison possible - it was no contest for me as the M5 checked every missing box. Of course I still later modified the suspension on it, but that's another story....great car the E39 M5...owned it for the following 14 years.

It really comes down to the individual, what they want from a car, how they want the car to feel, and what makes them enjoy it. My wife is the main driver of the M2C, and she would have had a list of stuff an M240i would need before she'd be content with it similar to my E39 540i/6 list. We briefly considered the M240i but passed on that option relatively quickly.
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      03-26-2020, 12:10 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Then again, I've been autocrossing since 1975 and track driving since 1981, so my internal evaluation meter is likely calibrated a lot differently than the average M240i owner.
I think this is really important. People like you and I are outliers when it comes down to it. Most would jump in the M240i, note its speed in a straight line and then note that it doesn't fall over in the corners like an SUV. They'd then note that the M2 is perhaps a bit faster in a straight line and that it also doesn't handle like an SUV.

Your average non-enthusiast is going to come away thinking both cars are fast and both cars handle well. Even the diff that 5Monster called out, isn't going to make a big difference to most people.

It's really only in the last 10-15 percent of the performance envelope where things go from night to day. And it's honestly not an exaggeration to say that. For people used to driving their car close to and occasionally beyond the limits of traction, the two cars are very very different.
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      03-26-2020, 01:00 PM   #15
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Yeah so back to the OP's question. After this whole thing is over with the virus, I would recommend test driving a M2C. Again, think of the 240i as a V6 Camaro and the M2C as a ZL1.
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      03-26-2020, 04:07 PM   #16
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I think you guys are nuts.

A ZL1 to a M240 is 60% increase in performance. An M2C to a M240 is 18% increase in performance.

Still a 2 series chassis, still I6 turbo, still same interior, still same displacement. Similar tire sizes etc. Of course there are improvements in M2C but letís not act like weíre talking about a difference between a Fiat and a Merc.

Zl1 comes with 250hp more than M2C, rides on magnaride or dssv, has massive rubber and is some 500lbs heavier. The comparison is no contest.

Perspective people.
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      Yesterday, 03:15 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5.M0NSTER View Post
A ZL1 to a M240 is 60% increase in performance. An M2C to a M240 is 18% increase in performance.
.
Where are you getting your figures from? The OP stated he wants to take the car to a track and wanted to know if there was a good size difference between a 240i and a M2C.
Let's be 100% clear here, the "M" in the m240i is strictly "Marketing." These are literally loaner/service cars from your local dealership.

If the OP were to take both a 240i and a M2C on a track, let's say a 30 minute HPDE session, within that 30 minutes, there wouldn't be a 18% difference in overall lap time, we would be talking a magnitude of hundreds.

So back to the OP's question, the performance scale between the 240 and M2C is massive, test drive the M2C. If you thought the 240i was fun, the M2C will blow your freaking mind.
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      Yesterday, 06:51 PM   #18
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I just switched from an m240i to an M2C

I don't track my cars and I just moved from an m240i to an M2C and I can tell you for an enthusiast there is a world of difference between the cars, just on the street

in straightline speed, there is not a huge gap, m240's are fast

but that's where the similarity ends
the interior, exterior, engine characteristics (free revving, motorsports nature), steering response, turn in, crisp handing etc etc

it's hard to articulate all the differences, but they all add up to MUCH MORE focused and engaging experience.

I enjoyed the m240i but I never lusted after driving it...I lust after driving the m2c, and I haven't even reached break in yet so I've only hit 5000 rpm at part throttle!

the m240i is a great car, the m2c is just more in so many ways

and the "moreness" is not necessarily completely evident on mere test drives where you are distracted by a salesperson and only drive for 15 min

when you live with the car for a bit then you begin to notice all the differences that leave you always wanting more!
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      Yesterday, 07:08 PM   #19
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About a month ago I was one of those guys who thought my 435 - with Stage 2 tune, coil overs and front bushings with negative camber and caster upgrades - was so good that an M can’t possibly be that far off.

I randomly test drove what is now my current car, and I was absolutely blown away. The M2C just felt savage in a straight like (it later dyno’ed at 425whp stock, roughly 500hp crank) and through the corners incredibly firm and composed. The way the front just “hooked” into the pavement and the rear rotated through the corners during my test drive was shocking. No matter what I did to my 435, I could never get it to behave and feel like that.

I know the subject in question is the M240i but this M thing plastered everywhere is just BMW capitalizing on their brand and diluting it after working so hard for decades to build it up. Kinda sad in my opinion.
Now there’s M, AMG and S on every other German car even though most things are cosmetic with a couple of performance-like features.

Another aspect here is exclusivity. The M2C is quite rare, holds its value better and so far in my experience, attracts a lot of attention.

I suppose everyone had a different take on how much this difference between theses models is actually worth. For me it wasn’t so much the lap times or 1/4 mile (even though it was a no brained from the test drive alone), but the way the car made me feel when accelerating or cornering. Some things are just very hard to put a price on or be able to reproduce with aftermarket upgrades.
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      Yesterday, 10:18 PM   #20
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Hmmm...not sure how relevant this will be, but imma going to do it anyways.

The ZL1 with the 1LE track package is available with a 10 speed auto while the regular SS Camaro 1LE cars are manual only. That tells you something about the demographic driving them. Old boring dudes that will prob buy the Camaro jackets in the parts department.

The M2C looks gorgeous. It stands out, but not because it looks like a hot wheels car like the Camaro, it's more subtle. It just looks good with the fat fender flares and stance. A whole lot less of them made like mentioned above. I think a lot less than even M4s and M3s. But of this is mostly just my opinion.
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      Today, 06:29 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McLaren720s View Post
About a month ago I was one of those guys who thought my 435 - with Stage 2 tune, coil overs and front bushings with negative camber and caster upgrades - was so good that an M canít possibly be that far off.

I randomly test drove what is now my current car, and I was absolutely blown away. The M2C just felt savage in a straight like (it later dynoíed at 425whp stock, roughly 500hp crank) and through the corners incredibly firm and composed. The way the front just ďhookedĒ into the pavement and the rear rotated through the corners during my test drive was shocking. No matter what I did to my 435, I could never get it to behave and feel like that.

I know the subject in question is the M240i but this M thing plastered everywhere is just BMW capitalizing on their brand and diluting it after working so hard for decades to build it up. Kinda sad in my opinion.
Now thereís M, AMG and S on every other German car even though most things are cosmetic with a couple of performance-like features.

Another aspect here is exclusivity. The M2C is quite rare, holds its value better and so far in my experience, attracts a lot of attention.

I suppose everyone had a different take on how much this difference between theses models is actually worth. For me it wasnít so much the lap times or 1/4 mile (even though it was a no brained from the test drive alone), but the way the car made me feel when accelerating or cornering. Some things are just very hard to put a price on or be able to reproduce with aftermarket upgrades.
Almost the same feeling for me, DD'ing a M135i and test drove an M2C couple of weeks ago.
WHAT A DIFFERENCE!!
I always felt like my M135i was a fun car, not so much since I tasted the M2C...
Appreciate 0
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