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Used test: BMW i4 vs Porsche Taycan

The BMW i4 and the Porsche Taycan are both stunningly quick electric cars. And you can now buy either one used for a fraction of its new price, but which one should you go for?...

Used test: BMW i4 vs Porsche Taycan

The contenders

BMW i4 M50

Price new £63,905
Price today £49,000*

As a brand, BMW has a strong reputation for driver appeal and interior quality, so does the i4 live up to it?

Porsche Taycan 4S Performance Battery Plus

Price new £87,541
Price today £49,000**

The Taycan is super sleek and super quick, and used prices are now extremely tempting 

*Price today is based on a 2021 (**2020) model with average mileage and a full service history and is correct at the time of writing

Imagine going back to the '60s, '70s or '80s and telling people that, one day, you'll be able to buy a brace of stunning performance cars that run on the same power as a milk float. They'd probably call you crazy. But that's exactly what we have here.

More specifically, we've got the range-topping M50 version of the BMW i4 and our recommended Porsche Taycan variant, the 4S – although there are even spritelier Taycans out there if you've got more to spend.

Grey BMW i4 front cornering

At three and four years old respectively, the i4 M50 and Taycan 4S go for similar money, with both of these electric cars significantly cheaper than they were when new.


Performance, ride, handling, refinement

Let's get one thing straight before we talk figures: if you find either of these cars slow, you must be fresh out of high-g training. Both deliver immense acceleration pretty much immediately when you twitch your right foot, shoving you back into your seat like little else on the road can. 

During our testing, the Taycan 4S blasted from 0-60mph in just 3.6sec (making it as quick as a Ferrari California T). Meanwhile, the M50 was just 0.2sec slower than its rival.

Porsche Taycan 2021 front

The Taycan is a treat in the corners, too. There's loads of grip and very little body lean to speak of. Plus, the well-weighted, precise steering gives you the confidence to drive spiritedly. In short, it's very similar to conventionally powered Porsches.

By contrast, while the i4 feels suitably sharp at first, when you pick up the pace, it fails to defy physics in the way that the Taycan does; instead, it feels its considerable weight. 

Even in the most focused Sport mode, there's more body lean and the i4 doesn’t feel particularly nimble through quick direction changes. If anything, the lighter eDrive35 and eDrive40 models (with their single motors) feel a touch more agile.

On the other hand, the M50 rides very well, with a suppleness you might not expect from such a performance-focused car – this is thanks largely to its adjustable suspension.

BMW i4 2022 infotainment screen displaying suspension mode controls

Then again, the Taycan also gets adjustable suspension, and it actually edges it for comfort, because its extra composure means you're not jostled around in your seat over broken surfaces, whereas you can be in the i4.

Both cars are remarkably hushed on the move, with minimal wind and road noise and very little electric motor whine.

However, if range is a priority, you'll want to make sure you find a 4S with the Performance Battery Plus option added from new, because this brings a larger battery for 288 miles of official range. The i4 M50's official range is even better, mind you, at 315 miles. Keep in mind that in both cases, it will be difficult to hit these numbers, especially when it's cold.