2020 BMW M4 vs. 2019 Dodge Challenger

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/19

The M4 has standard City Collision Mitigation, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Challenger offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The M4’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Challenger doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The M4 offers an optional Side and Top View Cameras to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Challenger only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

Both the M4 and the Challenger have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available blind spot warning systems.

Warranty

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The M4 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Challenger’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The M4’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the Challenger’s (12/unlimited vs. 5/60,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the M4 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Dodge doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Challenger.

Reliability

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For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the engines in the M4 have an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of some of the engines in the Challenger.

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the M4 has a 209-amp alternator. The Challenger’s standard 160-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the M4 has a standard 900-amp battery. The Challenger’s 730-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 11 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 19th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 7th in reliability, above the industry average. With 56 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 28th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 13 places higher in reliability than Dodge.

Engine

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As tested in Car and Driver the BMW M4 (base engine) is faster than the Dodge Challenger V6 (automatics tested):

M4

Challenger

Zero to 60 MPH

3.9 sec

6.3 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

8.6 sec

16.3 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

4.2 sec

6.7 sec

Quarter Mile

12.1 sec

14.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

119 MPH

95 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/19

On the EPA test cycle the M4 Coupe Manual gets better fuel mileage than the Challenger R/T manual RWD 5.7 V8 (18 city/25 hwy vs. 15 city/23 hwy).

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the M4’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Challenger doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the BMW M4 higher (3 out of 10) than the Dodge Challenger (1 to 3). This means the M4 produces up to 22.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Challenger every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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The M4 offers an optional sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The Challenger doesn’t offer an SMG.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the M4’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Challenger:

M4

M4

Challenger SXT

Challenger Hellcat

Front Rotors

15 inches

15.7 inches

12.6 inches

15.4 inches

Rear Rotors

14.6 inches

15 inches

12.6 inches

13.8 inches

The M4’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Challenger SXT are solid, not vented.

The M4 offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The Challenger doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

The M4 stops much shorter than the Challenger:

M4

Challenger

70 to 0 MPH

151 feet

176 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

98 feet

109 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the M4 has larger standard tires than the Challenger (F:255/40R18 & R:275/40R18 vs. 235/55R18).

The M4’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Challenger SXT’s standard 55 series tires. The M4’s optional tires have a lower 30 series profile than the Challenger Widebody’s 35 series tires.

Chassis

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The BMW M4 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 250 to 350 pounds less than the Dodge Challenger.

The M4 is 1 foot, 1 inches shorter than the Challenger, making the M4 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The design of the BMW M4 amounts to more than styling. The M4 has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .34 Cd. That is lower than the Challenger (.337 to .398). A more efficient exterior helps the M4 go faster and keeps the interior quieter. It also helps the M4 get better fuel mileage.

For excellent aerodynamics, the M4 has standard flush composite headlights. The Challenger has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

The M4’s standard power retractable hardtop allows a seamless transition from an open car, to a completely sealed coupe. The Challenger doesn’t offer a retractable hardtop.

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the M4 Coupe is quieter than the Challenger SRT Hellcat:

M4

Challenger

At idle

48 dB

59 dB

Full-Throttle

87 dB

87 dB

70 MPH Cruising

68 dB

76 dB

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/19

The M4 Coupe has .5 inches more front headroom, .2 inches more front legroom and .6 inches more rear legroom than the Challenger.

Cargo Capacity

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A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the M4 easier. The M4’s trunk lift-over height is 26.2 inches, while the Challenger’s liftover is 33.2 inches.

With its coupe or convertible body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the M4 offers cargo security. The Challenger’s non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just kicking your foot under the back bumper can open the M4’s trunk, leaving your hands completely free. The Challenger doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics

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When two different drivers share the M4, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each keyless remote activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, outside mirror angle, climate settings and radio stations. The Challenger doesn’t offer a memory system.

The M4 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Challenger doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The M4 has a lever hand brake in the console, easy to use while keeping both feet free and not impeding entry and exit. The Challenger’s foot pedal parking brake is not handy to use as a hill holding device with a manual transmission.

The M4’s front power windows open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Challenger’s power windows’ switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

If the windows are left open on the M4 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Challenger can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The M4 has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Challenger doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The M4’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Challenger’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the M4 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Challenger doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The M4 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Challenger doesn’t offer headlight washers.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the M4 has standard cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Challenger doesn’t offer cornering lights. The M4 also offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

A power rear sunshade is optional in the M4 Coupe to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Challenger doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

When the M4 is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Challenger’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The M4 has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Challenger has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The M4’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Challenger doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/19

The BMW M4 comes in coupe and convertible bodystyles; the Dodge Challenger isn’t available as a convertible.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/19

The 4 Series was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” in 2014. The Challenger has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The M3/M4 was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 13 of the last 23 years. The Challenger has never been an “All Star.”

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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