Which Manual is the Better Value?

BMW has finally revealed the G87 M2 to the masses, and if you listened very closely on October 11th, 2022, you could hear the collective sighs of relief from enthusiasts echo around the globe. The M2 did not receive the controversial front end that the G80 and G82 M3 and M4 got, and looks decidedly, well, normal. Even better, it does shares a lot of running gear with its big brothers. That means lots of power, rear-wheel drive, and a six-speed manual. Not a bad deal for a base price of $63,195 after the $995 delivery fee and before ADM.

All good things, right? Well, yes. Especially the bit about the nose. But there’s another car that makes a very compelling case for enthusiasts looking for a reasonably affordable, RWD, manual coupe: the Toyota Supra. That one starts at just $53,595, very nearly $10,000 less expensive. Let’s take a closer look and see what a hundred c-notes get you.

Power Tools

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Generating 382 horsepower and 368 pound-feet of torque from its BMW-sourced B58 inline-six, the Supra scoots from a standstill to 60 mph in about four seconds. It’ll continue to pull all the way to an electronically limited speed of 155 mph. Stopping power comes from 13-inch rotors front and rear, with big Brembo 4-piston calipers up front and a single-piston floating rear caliper in the rear.

Utilizing the S58 engine from previous M offerings like the X3 M and G80 M3, the G87 M2 makes do with 453 ponies and 406 pounds of twist. BMW claims the manual car will accelerate from 0-60 in around four seconds, and it will continue to pull all the way to an electronically limited speed of 155 mph. You get six-piston calipers up front and – stop me if you’ve heard this – single-piston floating rear calipers. They measure 15.6 inches and 14.6 inches in the front and rear, respectively.

They both have 13.7-gallon fuel tanks, they both get limited-slip differentials, and their overall width is between an inch of one another. To say the vehicles are similar would be the understatement of the century.

Weight For It

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Despite seemingly sharing a lot, there’s an elephant in the room, and it’s the M2. It weighs 400 pounds more than the manual-equipped Supra, at 3814 pounds vs. 3400 pounds. Why? Well, bigger brakes contribute something, the rest may be attributed to newly-revised IIHS crash tests or sound deadening. The bottom line is, I don’t know why or how the M2 weighs nearly two tons, but it does.

That being said: the outgoing M2 weighs more than it should, too, but it drives quite wonderfully. You can’t fight physics – the car will be objectively heavy – but balance and a well-tuned suspension can make you think a lot of that weight isn’t there. Let’s hope that’s the case here. Either way, the Supra is for sure the lighter of the two – and the bench racing seems to corroborate that.

Interior / Amenities 

2023 Supra Manual Shifter

The Supra gets stuck with a lightly reskinned iDrive 6 – which is now two generations behind what you’ll find the G87 M2 or almost any other BMW at or above the $50,000 mark. That’s not a terrible thing though – it hasn’t aged poorly. It’s also incredibly intuitive to navigate, especially once you’ve spent some time with it.

Here’s where I’d love to include a list of advantages that iDrive 8 provides, but if I’m being honest, I can’t think of one. iDrive 8’s digital dash is video gamey and kind of silly looking, and at least the Supra’s tachometer goes in the correct direction. BMW has removed physical buttons for many functions that see daily use, like climate controls and the old favorites bar. I guess you get “Hey BMW” integration, but I’m not buying a $60,000 RWD sports coupe so that I can tell it to order me Chinese food.

G87 M2 vs. Toyota Supra: What’s the Better Manual Value? 

I haven’t driven either, so I can’t technically answer. What I do know is that unless you need a back seat or the extra space you get with the M2, there are objectively very few things it’s better for, from an overall value standpoint.

I am hoping that the G87 M2 drives so well that you forget about the $10,000 price gap. Otherwise, my money is on the manual Supra as a better overall value. What do you think?