Supercars are intended to represent the absolute pinnacle of what is technologically possible, but that is a constantly shifting target and each successive generation outdoes its predecessor as it makes the most of new developments.

But how much has technology moved on in the past 25 to 30-years? Could a modern super saloon match these once untouchable supercars or is the chasm so wide that no amount of modern technology can overcome the basic laws of nature? 

We set out to find out by comparing what is regarded by many as the benchmark super saloon, the BMW M5 to the very best supercars that were on sale in the 1990s. 

Can the latest version of the car that started the sports saloon category as a modified 5 Series really take on and beat the fastest supercars from the 1990s, or is that asking too much of a 4,000-pound four-door family car?