Originally Posted by bruce.augenstein@comcast.
The second thing is that, if you were willing to abuse the machinery*, the six-speed car would be quicker to 60 than the auto, and might in fact still be with (or even ahead of) the auto at the quarter mile point. The idea here is that an early lead is very hard to overcome because, in a quarter mile drag race, you have very little time to first reverse the trend, and then overtake. I know BMW says the auto is quicker, and I'm quite sure it is under their test procedures, but what that first chart tells me is that, everything done perfectly, the six-speed car has the potential early advantage that might in fact even hold up through a quarter mile. Of course as mentioned, you'd have to do everything perfectly, which is clearly not possible on any consistent basis, especially if you're me.
As stated by you all the chart does is give you theoretical possibilities. So on paper a car might be faster or slower than another, but that doesn't mean it is when it's on the road being driven. I'm not saying there is no use for charts, but for comparing one car to another all you are doing is comparing theory, not necessarily "real world" facts.