Zero to 30 MPH

1.6 sec

1.9 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

4.3 sec

5.1 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

10.9 sec

13.2 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

5.6 sec

6.1 sec

Passing 30 to 50 MPH

2.8 sec

3.3 sec

Passing 50 to 70 MPH

3.5 sec

3.8 sec

Quarter Mile

12.9 sec

13.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

107 MPH

102 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the S5’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 Z4 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The S5 has 1.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Z4 (15.3 vs. 13.7 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.


All wheel drive, available in the S5, provides the best traction for acceleration in wet, dry, and icy conditions. In corners, all wheel drive allows both outside wheels to provide power, balancing the car. This allows for better handling. The BMW Z4 is not available with all wheel drive.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the S5’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Z4:


Z4 sDrive30i

Z4 M40i

Front Rotors

13.8 inches

13 inches

13.7 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the S5 has larger standard tires than the Z4 (245/40R18 vs. 225/45R18). The S5’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Z4 (265/30R20 vs. 255/35R19).

The S5’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 Z4’s standard 45 series front tires. The S5’s optional tires have a lower 30 series profile than the Z4’s optional 35 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S5 offers optional 20-inch wheels. The Z4’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

Suspension and Handling

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the S5 Cabriolet’s wheelbase is 11.7 inches longer than on the Z4 (108.9 inches vs. 97.2 inches).

Passenger Space

The S5 has standard seating for 4 passengers; the Z4 can only carry 2.

The S5 Cabriolet has 29 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Z4 (81 vs. 52).

Cargo Capacity

The S5’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Z4 doesn’t offer folding rear seats, only a ski pass-through.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just kicking your foot under the back bumper can open the S5’s trunk, leaving your hands completely free. The Z4 doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than BMW. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 10% lower rating, BMW is ranked 11th.


The S5’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Z4’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the S5 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Z4 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the S5 has standard extendable sun visors. The Z4 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the S5 keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Z4 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

Model Availability

The Audi S5 comes in coupe, convertible and four-door hatchback bodystyles; the BMW Z4 isn’t available as a coupe or four-door.

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

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