Lurid acceleration, perfect balance, intuitive handling, pine-tar levels of grip--performance means different things to different drivers.
And sometimes it means everything.
Here at The Car Connection, we rate and review more than 250 new vehicles every year, across six categories including performance. From that group of new and updated vehicles, only a few receive a perfect score of 10 for performance.
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That ultimate rating reveals the ultimate performance cars--even those that don't break earth-shattering records in every category. Some of them we choose because they're singularly brilliant--or even brilliant at their attainable price.
This year, the vehicles that have earned our highest performance score include some of the most desirable new vehicles on the road--everything from Audis and BMWs to a pair of rear-drive sports cars without the benefit of a Ferrari pedigree. Each is remorselessly entertaining to drive, even if there's no massive-displacement V-8 underhood, or track-ready tires underfoot.
According to our editors, these are best performance vehicles of 2015:
Balanced all-wheel-drive handling and a fantastic dual-clutch transmission make the R8 one of the most usable supercars.
2015 BMW M4Enlarge Photo
In either body style, BMW's archetypal M cars love quaffing long uphill runs at the horizon with gusto, shaving a hundred miles per hour undramatically off with the carbon-ceramics, and settling firmly and predictably into uphill 30-degree bends without a knee bent.
2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06Enlarge Photo
Seriously fast, incredibly fun, and a monstrous value, the 2015 Corvette Stingray sets a benchmark for performance.
2014 Ferrari 458 ItaliaEnlarge Photo
The Italia is one of the most accessible yet capable high-performance cars to ever be produced by the Italian sports-car maker.