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25 Top-rated AWD Sports Cars for Thrilling Performance and Handling

25 Top-rated AWD Sports Cars for Thrilling Performance and Handling

25 Top-rated AWD Sports Cars for Thrilling Performance and Handling

In the realm of automotive excellence, all-wheel-drive (AWD) sports cars have carved a niche for themselves, offering an unparalleled blend of performance, stability, and handling. These machines, designed for adrenaline junkies, ensure optimal power distribution to all four wheels, resulting in enhanced traction, especially in challenging driving conditions. Whether it’s the roar of a turbocharged engine, the elegance of a sleek design, or the precision of a finely-tuned suspension, AWD sports cars deliver an exhilarating driving experience that’s second to none. From iconic legends like the Porsche 911 Carrera to electric marvels like the Tesla Model S Plaid, this list celebrates the crème de la crème of AWD sports cars that promise not just speed, but also an unmatched driving experience. Dive in as we explore the top-rated AWD sports cars that have set the benchmark for thrilling performance and impeccable handling.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Audi TT RS Quattro: A modern interpretation of Audi’s rally heritage, offering a blend of history and turbocharged performance.
  2. Jaguar F-Type R Convertible: British craftsmanship meets V8 roar, providing a unique open-air driving experience.
  3. Nissan GT-R: Known as “Godzilla”, this Japanese powerhouse is a technological marvel with a reputation for track dominance.
  4. VW Golf R: A testament to Volkswagen’s commitment to performance, this hatchback is a true pocket rocket with AWD capabilities.
  5. Porsche 911 Carrera 4: An evolution of Porsche’s rich sports car heritage, offering a balanced AWD driving experience.
  6. Tesla Model S Plaid: A game-changer in the electric vehicle segment, setting new standards in speed and tech innovation.
  7. Honda NSX: A hybrid supercar that offers a perfect blend of performance and technology.
  8. BMW M850i xDrive: A grand tourer that perfectly marries luxury and performance.
  9. Mercedes AMG E53 Coupé 4Matic+: A subtle yet powerful car that showcases Mercedes’ expertise in luxury and performance.
  10. Toyota GR Yaris: A compact car with rally roots, offering explosive performance in a small package.
  11. Mercedes-Benz EQE: A pioneering electric luxury sedan that combines opulence with impressive performance.
  12. Porsche Taycan: Porsche’s entry into the electric vehicle market, offering exhilarating performance without compromising on luxury.
  13. Genesis G70: A newcomer making waves in the luxury segment, offering impressive performance at a competitive price.
  14. BMW i4: A testament to BMW’s commitment to electric vehicles, offering both luxury and performance.
  15. Mercedes-Benz E-Class: A benchmark in the luxury segment, available in various body styles and engine options for every driving enthusiast.

1. 2023 BMW 2 Series xDrive: A Blend of Performance and Luxury

The 2023 BMW 2 Series xDrive stands out as a remarkable blend of performance and luxury. With its AWD system called xDrive, it offers an upgrade on both the 230i and M240i coupes. BMW’s reputation for crafting sporty cars is evident in the 230i Coupe, boasting one of the highest horsepower ratings for an entry-level luxury car. Its standard turbo-4 engine churns out an impressive 255 horsepower.

For those seeking more thrill, the 453-horsepower M2 is an option, although it comes at a higher price and doesn’t feature AWD. The base 2 Series is equipped with a touchscreen infotainment system, wireless Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and a comprehensive set of advanced driver-assist systems (ADAS).

The 2 Series underwent a redesign in 2022 and has remained unchanged for 2023. It has a rich history dating back to 2014, with the addition of all-wheel drive as an option in 2015. The convertible variant also made its debut that year.

Shopping for a Used 2 Series?

2. 2023 Audi A5 Quattro: Premium Quality Inside and Out

The 2023 Audi A5 Quattro is synonymous with premium quality. As a luxury small car, it boasts an impressive ride complemented by a stylish interior. Depending on the trim, the A5 can deliver between 261 horsepower and the top-tier RS 5’s 444 horsepower. Every trim is equipped with Audi’s renowned Quattro all-wheel drive (AWD).

While the A5 might be slightly larger than dedicated sports cars like the Audi TT, it compensates with added space and comfort. The cabin exudes luxury with leather upholstery, supportive seats, and top-tier materials. All trims are equipped with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, HD Radio, and the MIB infotainment system featuring a 10.1-inch touchscreen.

For those considering a used A5, it’s worth noting that Audi refreshed the model in 2020. However, a full redesign wasn’t undertaken until 2018. This means A5 models from 2018-2023 bear similarities in appearance and features.

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3. 2023 Porsche 911-4: The Iconic Sports Car

The 2023 Porsche 911 is the embodiment of a dream sports car for many enthusiasts. Its iconic design, characterized by rounded headlights, a curved hood, and a low-slung profile, sets the standard for sports car aesthetics. Beyond its looks, the 911 offers exhilarating handling, making it a complete package for sports car aficionados. For those specifically seeking an AWD variant, models with a “4” in the name are the ones to look for. The top-tier Turbo models also come equipped with AWD.

The Carrera S and Carrera 4S both house a 443-horsepower 3.0-liter 6-cylinder engine. For manual enthusiasts, a no-cost 7-speed manual gearbox is an available option. The track-ready GT3 variant is also available with a manual, paired with a high-revving 4.0-liter 6-cylinder engine. For those seeking the pinnacle of performance, the 911 Turbo S offers a whopping 640 horsepower.

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4. 2023 Nissan GT-R: Racing Game Come to Life

The 2023 Nissan GT-R is a marvel of engineering, bringing the thrill of racing games to real life. Powered by a twin-turbocharged V6 engine, it delivers a staggering 565 horsepower. This allows the GT-R to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in a mere 2.9 seconds, making it one of the fastest AWD sports cars available. Its advanced AWD system and precise steering ensure that the GT-R remains composed even when pushed to its limits.

While its performance is top-notch, the GT-R’s cabin might not be as opulent as some of its competitors. However, it offers well-bolstered seats, leather upholstery, and modern tech features like Apple CarPlay, HD Radio, and the NissanConnect infotainment system.

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5. 2023 Dodge Challenger AWD: Power Meets Iconic Styling

The 2023 Dodge Challenger is a testament to raw power combined with iconic design. Its engine lineup starts with a 303-horsepower V6 and goes up to the 807-horsepower supercharged Hellcat models. However, only the V6 variant offers AWD. While the Challenger emphasizes power, it’s notably heavier and less agile compared to its peers.

The interior, though spacious and well-built, may not be as luxurious as some of its competitors. However, it comfortably seats five and comes equipped with modern tech features like Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and the Uconnect 4 infotainment system.

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6. 2023 BMW 4 Series xDrive: A Perfect Balance of Sportiness and Comfort

The 2023 BMW 4 Series xDrive is a testament to BMW’s commitment to blending sportiness with comfort. The 4 Series, with its sleek design and aggressive stance, is a head-turner on the road. The xDrive, BMW’s proprietary AWD system, ensures optimal traction in various driving conditions, enhancing the car’s performance capabilities.

Under the hood, the 430i xDrive Coupe comes with a turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 255 horsepower. For those craving more power, the M440i xDrive Coupe houses a turbocharged six-cylinder engine, delivering a robust 382 horsepower. Inside, the cabin is adorned with premium materials, a user-friendly infotainment system, and a suite of advanced safety features.

Shopping for a Used 4 Series?

7. 2023 Audi TT Quattro: Compact Yet Mighty

The 2023 Audi TT Quattro is a compact sports car that doesn’t compromise on performance. Its sharp design, characterized by a low-slung profile and aggressive lines, makes it stand out. The Quattro, Audi’s signature AWD system, is standard across all TT models, ensuring a dynamic driving experience.

Powering the TT is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that churns out 228 horsepower. While it might not be the most powerful in its class, its lightweight design ensures nimble handling and quick acceleration. The interior is equally impressive, featuring Audi’s Virtual Cockpit, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, and a range of luxury amenities.

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8. 2023 Lexus RC 300 AWD: Elegance Meets Performance

The 2023 Lexus RC 300 AWD is where elegance meets performance. This luxury coupe, with its bold spindle grille and sleek design, exudes sophistication. The RC 300 AWD is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 260 horsepower, ensuring a spirited drive.

Inside, the RC 300 boasts a plush interior with high-quality materials, comfortable seating, and a host of tech features. The infotainment system, though not the most intuitive, offers Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a premium sound system. Lexus’s commitment to safety is evident with a comprehensive suite of advanced safety features standard across all models.

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9. 2024 Jaguar F-Type: British Elegance with a Roar

The 2024 Jaguar F-Type is a representation of British elegance combined with a roaring performance. Its curvaceous design, accentuated by sharp lines and an aggressive front grille, makes it a standout in the sports car segment. The F-Type offers both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive options, catering to different driving preferences.

Under its hood, the F-Type comes with a range of engine options, starting from a turbocharged four-cylinder to a supercharged V8, producing up to 575 horsepower in the R variant. The AWD system, available in select trims, ensures optimal traction and enhances the car’s dynamic capabilities. Inside, the F-Type boasts a luxurious cabin, state-of-the-art infotainment system, and a range of advanced safety features.

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10. 2023 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 4Matic: Luxury Redefined

The 2023 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 4Matic is where luxury meets performance. As a part of the esteemed C-Class lineup, the 4Matic variant offers an all-wheel-drive system that ensures a balanced and controlled driving experience. Its elegant design, characterized by the signature Mercedes grille and sleek profile, is a testament to the brand’s commitment to luxury.

Powering the C-Class 4Matic is a range of engine options, from a turbocharged four-cylinder to a robust V6, ensuring there’s a variant for every driving enthusiast. The interior is a blend of luxury and technology, featuring plush seating, high-quality materials, and the latest MBUX infotainment system. Safety is paramount, with a suite of advanced driver-assist features standard across all models.

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11. Audi TT RS Quattro: The Modern Rally Icon

The Audi TT RS Quattro is not just a sports car; it’s a statement. Drawing inspiration from Audi’s rally heritage, this car is a blend of history and modernity. Its 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine produces 394 horsepower, ensuring a thrilling drive. The Quattro all-wheel-drive system, combined with its lightweight construction, offers impeccable handling. Inside, the TT RS is adorned with luxurious materials, sport seats, and the latest MMI infotainment system.

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12. Jaguar F-Type R Convertible: The Roaring British Beauty

The Jaguar F-Type R Convertible is where British elegance meets raw power. Its supercharged 5.0-liter V8 engine roars to life with 575 horsepower, making every drive an event. The all-wheel-drive system ensures that this power is effectively put to the road. The convertible top lets you enjoy open-air driving, while the interior, with its premium materials and advanced tech, ensures comfort.

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13. Nissan GT-R: Godzilla’s Reign Continues

The Nissan GT-R, affectionately known as “Godzilla”, is a testament to Japanese engineering prowess. Its 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine churns out 565 horsepower, while the advanced AWD system ensures rapid acceleration and cornering abilities. The GT-R’s aerodynamic design isn’t just for looks; it plays a crucial role in its performance. Inside, the GT-R offers a blend of sportiness and luxury, with an 8-inch touchscreen and an 11-speaker Bose audio system.

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14. VW Golf R: The Ultimate Hot Hatch

The VW Golf R takes the practicality of a hatchback and injects it with pure adrenaline. Its 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine produces 315 horsepower. The 4MOTION all-wheel-drive system, combined with adaptive chassis control, ensures a dynamic driving experience. Inside, the Golf R offers a digital cockpit, touch controls, and a range of driver assistance features.

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15. Porsche 911 Carrera 4: The Legend Evolves

The Porsche 911 Carrera 4 is the next chapter in the 911’s storied legacy. Its flat-six engine, combined with the all-wheel-drive system, offers a balanced and exhilarating driving experience. The 911’s iconic silhouette is instantly recognizable, while the interior boasts premium materials, advanced infotainment, and a focus on driver engagement.

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16. Tesla Model S Plaid: The Future of Performance

The Tesla Model S Plaid is redefining the boundaries of electric vehicle performance. With over 1,000 horsepower from its tri-motor setup, it boasts a 0-60 mph time of under 2 seconds. Beyond performance, the Model S Plaid offers a minimalist yet luxurious interior, a vast 17-inch central touchscreen, and Tesla’s advanced Autopilot features.

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17. Honda NSX: The Hybrid Supercar

The Honda NSX (or Acura NSX in North America) is where technology meets performance. Its hybrid powertrain, consisting of a twin-turbo V6 and three electric motors, produces a combined 573 horsepower. The advanced SH-AWD system ensures precise handling and acceleration. Its design is both aggressive and aerodynamic, while the interior offers a blend of luxury and race-inspired elements.

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18. BMW M850i xDrive: Grandeur in Motion

The BMW M850i xDrive is the epitome of a grand tourer. Its 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 engine produces 523 horsepower, ensuring a blend of luxury and performance. The xDrive system offers optimal traction, while the adaptive M suspension ensures a comfortable ride. Inside, the M850i is a haven of luxury, with Merino leather, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, and a 10.25-inch central display.

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19. Mercedes AMG E53 Coupé 4Matic+: A Symphony of Power

The Mercedes AMG E53 Coupé 4Matic+ is a blend of elegance and performance. Its 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six engine, combined with a mild hybrid system, produces 429 horsepower. The 4Matic+ system ensures a dynamic driving experience. The coupe’s design is both elegant and sporty, while the interior boasts the latest MBUX infotainment system, luxurious materials, and advanced driver assistance features.

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20. Toyota GR Yaris: The Rally Champion

The Toyota GR Yaris is a compact car with the heart of a rally champion. Developed with input from Toyota’s World Rally Championship team, its 1.6-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine produces 257 horsepower. The GR-Four all-wheel-drive system, combined with its lightweight construction, ensures a thrilling drive. Its aggressive design is a nod to its rally roots, while the interior offers modern tech and comfort features.

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21. Mercedes-Benz EQE: Pioneering Electric Luxury

The Mercedes-Benz EQE is setting new standards in the electric luxury sedan segment. With a range of over 400 miles and a top speed of 130 mph, it’s both practical and performance-oriented. The interior is a blend of traditional Mercedes luxury with futuristic elements, including the Hyperscreen – a massive OLED display that stretches across the dashboard.

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22. Porsche Taycan: A New Electric Era

The Porsche Taycan marks Porsche’s foray into the electric vehicle segment, and it does so with a bang. With multiple variants offering up to 750 horsepower in the Turbo S version, the Taycan is a performance beast. Its 800-volt architecture ensures rapid charging, while the interior offers a blend of traditional Porsche design cues with modern tech.

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23. Genesis G70: The New Kid on the Block

The Genesis G70 is making waves in the luxury compact sedan segment. Its 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 engine produces 365 horsepower, ensuring a spirited drive. The all-wheel-drive system, combined with its dynamic chassis, offers a balanced driving experience. The interior is a blend of luxury and tech, with quilted leather seats, a 10.25-inch touchscreen, and a range of driver assistance features.

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24. BMW i4: The Electric Revolution

The BMW i4 is BMW’s answer to the growing demand for electric luxury sedans. With a range of up to 300 miles and a 0-60 mph time of 3.7 seconds in the M50 variant, it’s both practical and performance-oriented. The interior offers typical BMW luxury, with the latest iDrive system, a large central display, and a range of advanced tech features.

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25. Mercedes-Benz E-Class: The Benchmark of Luxury

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class has long been the benchmark in the luxury midsize sedan segment. Its range of engines, including a 603-horsepower V8 in the E 63 S AMG variant, ensures there’s an E-Class for every driving enthusiast. The 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is available across the range, ensuring optimal traction. The interior is a blend of luxury and tech, with the latest MBUX infotainment system, plush seating, and a range of advanced safety features.

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Summary Table:

#Car ModelKey Features
1Audi TT RS Quattro2.5-liter turbocharged engine, Quattro AWD, MMI infotainment
2Jaguar F-Type R Convertible5.0-liter supercharged V8, open-air driving, premium interior
3Nissan GT-R3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V6, advanced AWD, aerodynamic design
4VW Golf R2.0-liter turbocharged engine, 4MOTION AWD, digital cockpit
5Porsche 911 Carrera 4Flat-six engine, iconic silhouette, advanced infotainment
6Tesla Model S PlaidTri-motor setup, 0-60 in 2 seconds, 17-inch touchscreen
7Honda NSXHybrid powertrain, SH-AWD system, futuristic design
8BMW M850i xDrive4.4-liter twin-turbo V8, xDrive system, adaptive M suspension
9Mercedes AMG E53 Coupé 4Matic+3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six, 4Matic+ system, MBUX infotainment
10Toyota GR Yaris1.6-liter turbocharged engine, GR-Four AWD, rally-inspired design
11Audi RS7 SportbackTwin-turbo V8, spacious interior, advanced tech features
12Lamborghini AventadorV12 engine, iconic design, advanced aerodynamics
13Subaru WRX STITurbocharged performance, rally-inspired features, AWD capabilities
14Alfa Romeo Giulia QuadrifoglioTwin-turbo V6, driver-focused interior, Italian craftsmanship
15Maserati Quattroporte SQ4Twin-turbo V6, opulent interior, Italian luxury
16Mercedes-Benz EQEAll-electric, over 400-mile range, Hyperscreen display
17Porsche TaycanAll-electric, up to 750 horsepower, modern luxury
18Genesis G703.3-liter twin-turbo V6, 365 horsepower, 10.25-inch touchscreen, navigation
19BMW i4All-electric, 536 horsepower, 14.9-inch touchscreen, “Hey BMW” virtual assistant
20Mercedes-Benz E-ClassRange of engines, 4Matic AWD, luxury and tech features
21Mercedes-Benz EQEAll-electric sedan, 400+ mile range, 12.8-inch touchscreen, augmented-reality navigation
22Porsche TaycanAll-electric, 616 horsepower, modern and luxurious interior
23Genesis G703.3-liter twin-turbo V6, 365 horsepower, 10.25-inch touchscreen, navigation
24BMW i4Electric, 536 horsepower, 14.9-inch touchscreen, “Hey BMW” virtual assistant
25Mercedes-Benz E-ClassMidsize luxury, 603-horsepower V8 option, 12.3-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto

In the realm of automotive excellence, these 25 AWD sports cars stand out for their unmatched performance and superior handling. Each model, with its unique blend of power and precision, promises an exhilarating driving experience. Whether you’re a seasoned car enthusiast or someone seeking the thrill of a high-performance vehicle, this list offers a comprehensive guide to some of the best options available today. As the automotive world continues to evolve, these cars set the benchmark for what’s possible on the road.


1. Which vehicles offer electric or hybrid powertrains?

The Tesla Model S Plaid, Honda NSX, Mercedes-Benz EQE, Porsche Taycan, and BMW i4 are examples of cars that come with electric or hybrid powertrains.

2. Are there budget-friendly options among these top-rated AWD sports cars?

Indeed, models like the VW Golf R and Toyota GR Yaris provide exhilarating AWD performance at a more approachable price compared to some luxury counterparts.

3. Which vehicle is often referred to as “Godzilla”?

The Nissan GT-R has earned the nickname “Godzilla” due to its impressive performance and track prowess.

4. Are any of these vehicles available as convertibles?

Yes, the Jaguar F-Type R offers a convertible variant, allowing for an immersive open-air driving experience.

5. Which brands have multiple representations among these AWD sports cars?

Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and BMW have several models featured, highlighting their expertise in crafting top-tier AWD sports cars.

6. Are all these vehicles recent releases?

Not all. While models like the Genesis G70 and BMW i4 are newer entrants, others like the Porsche 911 Carrera have been in the market for years, boasting a rich legacy.

7. Which vehicle boasts the highest horsepower?

The Tesla Model S Plaid stands out with over 1,000 horsepower, ensuring rapid acceleration and unmatched performance.

More Information:

For those who are keen on diving deeper into the world of top-rated AWD sports cars, there are several resources available that provide comprehensive insights and reviews.

  1. US News & World Report recently published an article titled “These Are the Best AWD Sports Cars in 2023”, which delves into the advantages of all-wheel drive in sports cars, especially in terms of improved traction in various weather conditions. The article also lists some of the best AWD sports cars for the year, considering factors like performance and cabin quality.
  2. OPUMO Magazine offers a list of some of the best AWD sports cars, including popular models like the Audi TT RS Quattro, Jaguar F-Type R Convertible, and the Tesla Model S Plaid. You can read their detailed article here.
  3. For visual enthusiasts, there’s a comprehensive video review on YouTube that showcases the performance and features of some of the top AWD sports cars. This video provides a dynamic perspective on how these cars perform on the road, highlighting their acceleration, handling, and overall driving experience. Watch the video here.
  4. HotCars also has an article titled “These Are The 15 Best AWD Sports Cars On The Market Right Now”, which provides insights into some of the most sought-after AWD sports cars available today.
  5. Lastly, for those interested in a broader perspective, AutoGuide.com has a feature on the Top 15 Best AWD Sports Cars, which includes models from various brands and price ranges.

These resources provide a comprehensive overview of the AWD sports car segment, helping enthusiasts and potential buyers make informed decisions. Whether you’re looking for performance metrics, expert opinions, or visual reviews, the above links have got you covered.



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