BMW M2 vs. Mercedes-AMG A45 vs. Audi RS3 – Comparison

BMW M2 | October 16th, 2015 by 14
Bild Vergleich BMW M2 F87 Coupe Audi RS3 Sportback Mercedes A45 AMG 2015 02 750x500

If you’re looking for a new compact sports car in 2016, then you’re in luck. The German premium automakers have been hard at work the …

If you’re looking for a new compact sports car in 2016, then you’re in luck. The German premium automakers have been hard at work the last few years cranking out some interesting products for the segment. Audi built the RS3, while Mercedes designed the high-seller A45 AMG.

Now, BMW joins the pack with the new M2, a sports coupe which plans to take the top spot in the market.

Test drives are a few months out, so comparing the performance of three is – for now – at the specs level. We’re also going to look at the design of these sports cars and see which one stands out. All three vehicles follow an independent design language, with the compact M2 particularly standing out with its coupe design.

Bild Vergleich BMW M2 F87 Coupe Audi RS3 Sportback Mercedes A45 AMG 2015 01 750x562

The significantly widened fenders of the BMW M2 make for an impressive stance and with a bit more character on the road, so in our eyes, it’s a bit more appealing. The RS3 Sportback is five centimeters narrower; Mercedes is more than seven centimeters narrower.

The three athletes can’t be more different when it comes to engine construction. The Benz A45 AMG features a turbocharged four-cylinder engine with a 2.0 liter displacement; the Audi RS3 presents a 2.5 liter five-cylinder turbocharged and the M2 a 3.0 liter six-cylinder turbo unit with some parts from the M4’s S55.

Despite having the smallest engine capacity, the AMG makes 381 horsepower, leading the pack ahead of the M2 – 370 hp – and the RS3 – 367 hp. The two transverse mounted engines send the power to all-four wheels, while M2’s longitudinally mounted straight-six offers balanced weight distribution to a classic rear-wheel drive setup.

Bild Vergleich BMW M2 F87 Coupe Audi RS3 Sportback Mercedes A45 AMG 2015 03 750x750

The traction benefits the Benz and the Audi in the normal sprint to 100 km/h – 4.2 to 4.3 seconds. The manually shifted M2 Coupe runs from standstill to 100 km/h in 4.5 seconds. Both the Audi RS33 and the Mercedes-AMG A45 are not available with a manual transmission.

First comparative tests next Spring should solve some of the riddles and we can’t wait to see the three Germans going at it on the track.

[Photos: Bimmertoday]

14 responses to “BMW M2 vs. Mercedes-AMG A45 vs. Audi RS3 – Comparison”

  1. jason bourne says:

    Odd comparison: The M2 is the only two door.

    The Mercedes looks like it’s trying to imitate a WRX hatchback and the RS3 looks like a mini station wagon.

    And the M2 is the only one offering a six-speed manual.

    The M2 hands down.

  2. steven75 says:

    On looks alone the M2 completely trounces those other two. It’s like comparing a famous work of art vs something a 7 year old made with crayons.

  3. Tinky-Winky says:

    BMW should do the same with the hatchback too.

  4. scope213 says:

    The BMW looks nice. HOWEVER, when the RS3 sedan version comes out shortly it’ll force BMW to go back to the drawing board and push out a BMW M2.5 lol

  5. dc says:

    Shouldn’t the awd hatchbacks be compared to a JCW ALL4? I would put the M2 up against pricier, less practical Porsches, as happened with the original e36/8 clown shoe M coupe.

  6. vdbss says:

    It makes me laugh how many styling cues Merc copied from BMW on this car with the flair lines on the sides and the overall look of the nose. They’d have done much better coming up with a car that looks like a proper Merc and not a 1 series. Mind you most modern Mercs have been challenging to look at to say the least so I suppose in some ways, imitation is the greatest form of flattery.

  7. stinger15au says:

    M2 looks the goods, but the reality is, all these cars are/will be fantastic.

    The Audi is a bit bland, but I like that, its supremely quick and capable but in a understated way. All audi’s are like this. It is going to be the best to live with day to day and have about the same roll on performance as the M2, but in the real world it will be quickest. It also has the nicest cabin by far and to me at least the best noise but that can be subjective.

    The AMG is a bit mental as per their brief and is very quick under 100mph, which is fine for the vast majority of people. Its styling is quite out there, but I can see why they are very popular, it is let down by a cheap cabin however.

    The M2, is going to be good, but mainly due to traction is going to be the slowest of the bunch alot of the time. It will be great in roll ons. It will still be a great engine and the best on track as well as the best driver’s car, it is also the least practical (no surprise there)

    The other factor here is price.

    Here in Australia

    2016 A45 AMG – $89,000 on the road close to fully optioned
    2016 RS3 – $95,000 to $105,000 depending on options
    2016 M2 – At least $110,000, probably close to $120,000 optioned

    So the bang for buck is the AMG, its in the same performance class as the others, but the cabin is poor and doesn’t sound as nice imo. The M2 will be great, but at this price point its a bit in no mans land, 30k more gets you into a M3/M4/C63 area, while 10k less gets the faster, nicer cabined, better to live with RS3.

    So yeh all of them are great, its going to come down to budget and exactly what you want out of a car.

    • Eric says:

      Great points made here.
      Adding to that, The A45 and RS3 are certainly more accessible in terms of price and practicability as a daily driver. Especially the RS3. BMW won’t certainly price this car below 100k to protect the M3.
      I wonder what will happen if Audi decides to sell the RS3 as a sedan like the S3?
      Looking at all the options, its much cheaper to just get a Golf R with a stage 1 chip – 280kw.

    • Buzzz Lightsaber says:

      Just to clarify, the m2 is in reality a faster car, both road and track. All wheel drive is only useful from a starting point, but the m2 is so well balanced in this race, it’s head to head with its rivals, yet destroys them around the traps. Proven very recently by the m2 vs CLA45. Never an AMG has been faster in class than a BMW on a track, albeit they seem to constantly make them more powerful, such as the c63 vs m4. You’ve made good points, albeit incorrect ones about “fast”.

  8. Brandon says:

    I personally think that all 3 cars are unique and Excel in different ways. That being said I am and always will be a BMW fan, the car in my opinion is beutiful and more than capable in its class, I think it would be stupid to pick and outright winner here as I believe they will all be pretty close in terms of performance. At the end of the day which one to buy will come down to personal choice. I myself will buy the M2 irrespective of performance stats and I say that knowing that of the 3 it will probably not be tops around a track or the line, it’s just physics and it’s hard to admit but it’s the sad truth. BMW have always been known to make the fastest in class performance cars producing the highest coefficient of power, but with recent models have shown what under tunning a car can result in. If you are looking for outright performance I am sure a simple tunning will suffice. That being said it’s good to note that all these cars will give problems. This is essentially the turbo generation, yes turbos have been around for ages and yes this isn’t the first generation of cars we are seeing turbos in, but never before have cars been so reliant on them. These little Hot hatches will come with a string of problems and I believe a lot will start with the turbos. It’s logical isn’t it a 2 litre 4 cylinder with a turbo the size of the engine pushing 381 HP very impressive stats but the only place we hear of engines pushing that is on racing ? And those engines get rebuilt very often. Don’t get me wrong if I had the money I would buy all 3 no question but let’s fact is this is probably one of the few cars you would want to buy out of motor plan second hand.

    • Buzzz Lightsaber says:

      Another incorrect fact here. M2 is the fastest of both the rs3 and AMG 45 around a track. When BMW hasn’t been versus its competition? This was recently shown if you were to research m2 vs cla45 AMG. Again, BMW don’t and never have claimed point to point machines, leave that for the audis, but what they do, consistently, is make the fastest track weapons in their class. If suggest learn your cars before you buy one, because you obviously no nothing about cars other than their Kws.

      • Brandon says:

        I had a reply for this which detailed so many things and Highlighted what a little fuck boy you are bit it disappeared so just sleep confidently knowing I’m driving and m2 and ur driving and opel corsa getting fuck all pussy and being a proper wanker

        • Buzzz Lightsaber says:

          Thanks for helping with my sleep. To think all this time I wasn’t confident you’d be driving an m2! Gosh, what was I thinking. Probably the same delusional thoughts as you, stating the m2 is the slowest of the lot, albeit you’re buying one, giving it a tune and sticking fluffy dice and racing stickers on.

  9. […] 1 Series with around 400 horsepower which will go up against the strong-selling Audi RS3 and Mercedes-AMG A45, as well as the upcoming Volkswagen Golf R […]

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