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.
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.
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.