M5 vs M6: Which One is Better and Why?

You’re into BMWs, specifically the larger, more luxurious BMW models. Maybe you love “M” cars, and day dream about owning one, one day. Either way, you’re interesting in learning more about “M” cars.W

hich one is better? The M5 or the M6?

It really depends on what you want out of a car. Both are extremely luxurious cars. Both come with the same twin turbo V8 that outputs an insane amount of horsepower.

For this comparison we’ll look at the F10 M5 and the F12 M6. This just keeps us all on the same page, and makes the comparison as fair as possible.

BMW F10 M5

The M5 isn’t nearly as talked about amongst the car community when compared to other “M” cars such as the M3. This is probably because it’s designed for the “older” crowd and I don’t fit into that demographic.

The M5 has come with a host of different engines over the years. Everything from inline-6s, to v8s, to v10s.


The F10 M5 is equipped with a twin turbo V8 that outputs a ridiculous 560 horsepower and 502 lb-ft of torque. This is 60 more horsepower and 122 lb-ft more than the out-going E60 M5 with it’s V10 engine. That’s the magic of turbos!
More M5 info on Wikipedia

BMW F12 M6

The M6 is kind of an oddball car. The 6-series came ended in 1989, but made a return in 2005. With its return came with M6. The new M6 used many of its components from the E60 M5, including the 5.0L V10.

Another odd thing is that the new M6 was basically just a coupe version of the M5.


The new F12 M6 is equipped with the same twin turbo V8 that’s in the M5. It makes just as much horsepower and torque. Something different with the new M6 is the ability to purchase it in a coupe, sedan, or convertible.

The old M6 was only available as a coupe and convertible.
More M6 info on Wikipedia

M5 vs M6: Size

We’ve talked about the BMW numbering system in many of our other articles. The larger the number (5 series, 6 series, 7 series, etc.), the larger and more luxurious the vehicle.

Going by this logic will tell you that the M5 is smaller than the M6, but that’s actually not the case.

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Here are the dimensions of the F10 M5:

Wheelbase: 2,964 mm (116.7 in)
Length: 4,910 mm (193.3 in)
Width: 1,891 mm (74.4 in)
Height: 1,451 mm (57.1 in)
Curb weight: 1,945 kg (4,288 lb)

Now here are the dimensions of the F12 M6:

Wheelbase: 2,850 mm (112.2 in)
Length: 4,897 mm (192.8 in)
Width: 1,919 mm (75.56 in)
Height: 1,369 mm (53.9 in)
Curb weight: 1,925 kg (4,244 lb)

The M5 and the M6 are nearly identical in total length, but the M6 is 3.2″ shorter, and 1.1″ wider. The M6 is basically made to look more aggressive and more futuristic, with it’s low and wide stance. Another odd thing is that the M6 has a 4.5″ shorter wheelbase, which helps with handling.

M5 vs M6: Performance Numbers

If you are a die hard car person, then this is the part you’ve been waiting for. Which one of these is actually faster? Faster is always better especially when you’re paying this much for a performance car.

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Here are the numbers for the F10 M5:

  • Displacement: 4.4L V8
  • Horsepower: 560 bhp @ 6,000 RPM
  • Torque: 502 lb-ft @ 1,600 RPM
  • Weight: 4,288 lbs
  • 0-60: 3.7 seconds
  • 1/4 Mile: 11.9 seconds @ 122.4 mph
  • 60-0: 110 feet

Here are the same numbers for the F12 M6:

  • Displacement: 4.4L V8
  • Horsepower: 560 bhp @ 6,000 RPM
  • Torque: 502 lb-ft @ 1,600 rpm
  • Weight: 4,244 lbs
  • 0-60: 3.9 seconds
  • 1/4 Mile: 12. 1 seconds @ 120.2 mph
  • 60-0: 110 feet

As you can see from these numbers, the M5 and the M6 are nearly identical. The only performance differences are probably due to the driver doing the testing, and the conditions of the test track. To put it simply, these cars are completely identical in terms of performance.

M5 vs M6: Price

This shouldn’t surprise you much, but BMW produces very expensive luxury cars. Unfortunately “M” cars are much more expensive than their standard models. After all, performance parts are not cheap.

The F10 M5 starts at $94,100 for a “base” model, and with options can easily exceed $120k. The F12 M6 starts are $113,700, and can exceed $130k with options.

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What do you get for that extra $20k? Well not much as far as I can tell. You get the same engine, same transmission, and similar handling characteristics. You also get nearly identical performance numbers.

The M6 is going to be harder to fit 4 adults in due to the lower roofline. You’re basically paying an extra $20k for a lower and wider body.

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Which One is Better?

When I wrote this article, I knew that the M5 and the M6 were very similar. I didn’t know that the M6 was nearly $20k more than the M5. Knowing that you’re basically getting nothing for the massive price increase, I think it’s rather obvious which one of these cars is better.

The M5 is just as fast, has more interior room, and is $20k cheaper. Let me know what you think in the comments below!

10 thoughts on “M5 vs M6: Which One is Better and Why?”

  1. Thanks for the info I was really looking to.get the M6 because I thought it was more horsepower. Now that I read your article I have a better ideal on which one is more bang for your bucks

    • Before I purchased my M5, I had the opportunity to speak with a high ranking Exec in Germany. When I pressed as to why the $20k price differential, since they were almost identical cars…he stated in his thick Germen accent “Simply, Six iz more zen Five”. Can’t argue with that logic. I bought the M5.

  2. Great article, I personally think the M6 is sexier and more sleek, that’s why I went for the M6 convertible
    In San Marino Blue!

  3. I’ve had both and utility aside, the M6 is a better drive. Just traded in my M5 for an M6. The M6 much better looking, lower sleeker, corners better.

  4. M6 is sexier and is more driver centric. If rwd is your thing, I’d get the m6 gran coupe over the m5 any day. If you want more power, the 550m with s1 dinan tune is over 607hp+ and has awd and has a faster 0-60 of 3.1s instead of 3.9 found on the m6 with 600hp competition pkg. Although the 5 series awd models have the 8-speed with torque converter and not the 7-speed dial clutch.

  5. I have had both one after the other and currently own an M6 Gran Coupe. I think the M6 is sexier looking, much more unique (there are very few around), wider rear tires, as well as a much lower roof top. That means the seating position is quite different, you tend to be more inclined. Both are amazing cars, and do surprisingly well in tough winter conditions for rear-wheel drives.

  6. By the time you end up buying a used one (I got a 2014 M6 last year), the M5 and M6 and nearly identical in price. They’ve also done track testing and, on a track, the M6 is quicker by a small margin due to its better weight balance. A novice journalist driving the M6 was easily able to keep up with a (retired) touring car (multi) champion driving an M5.

  7. I think it’s really simple. The M6 is sportier(albeit not $20k sportier IMHO). I’m in my 30’s so I went for the more practical M5 for my wife, my baby car seat, my 91 year old grandmother, etc. However, if I were in my early 20’s I’d opt for the M6. But only if they were the same price(unless I was filthy rich).


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