Fast family cars for performance junkies

BMW M5 generations
It’s been more than 30 years since the BMW M5, one of the pioneers of the high performance family car segment, first came on the scene. 

As nice as small two-door coupes look, they’re not the most practical to own. Luckily in today’s automotive marketplace, moving up to four doors doesn’t have to mean slowing down. Several manufacturers from Lexus to Porsche offer some seriously high performance sedans that will make you think twice about calling them boring family cars.

2016 Lexus GS F

Lexus GS F

Following the RC, the GS is the latest Lexus to get the letter F slapped on it. That addition comes with it not only a more aggressive exterior appearance, but also a 5.0-litre V8 pumping out 467 horsepower at a rev-happy 7,100 rpm and 389 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed Sport Direct Shift automatic transmission helps manage all that power, initiating lightning-quick shifts that happen in one-tenth of a second.

2016 BMW M5 blue


The granddaddy of fast family sedans, BMW has been refining its fire-breathing M5 since the 1980s. The current sixth generation iteration has proven one of the most popular, with sales up 42 per cent compared to the previous model. And why not? At 560 horsepower, produced by a twin-turbo 4.4 L V8 motor, and an estimated average combined city/highway fuel consumption of 14.7 L/100 km, it’s one of the quickest and most fuel efficient examples to date.

2016 Porsche Panamera

Porsche Panamera

The unique design of the German automaker’s only four-door passenger car can be a bit of a polarizing topic. Appearances aside, the vehicle is every bit classic Porsche when it comes to performance. Available in rear-wheel drive, all-wheel drive and with a number of powertrain choices including a twin-turbo V6 and plug-in hybrid variant, enthusiasts might argue that the 4.8-litre V8 Panamera GTS provides the purest sports sedan experience. For those requiring a touch more luxury, move on up to an Executive trim featuring an extended wheelbase and more interior room. 

Posted by Benjamin Yong

Benjamin Yong is a freelance journalist and communications professional living in Richmond, B.C. He is often found writing about cars and the auto industry, amongst other things, or driving around in his work-in-progress 1990 Mazda MX-5. Twitter: @b_yong Instagram: @popuplights