Ford Focus RS vs BMW M135i

The scorchingly fast new Focus RS battles it out with BMW's hot hatch king to determine who rules the class...

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What Car? team
22 July 2015

What will they cost?

The Focus RS is around £1000 cheaper to start with, but cash buyers should be able to haggle almost £4000 off the list price of the M135i. Huge demand for the boxfresh RS and limited production mean no discounts at all, so it’s actually the pricier car at the outset.

Ford Focus RS vs BMW M135i

However, the RS is expected to lose its value slower, so both cars will cost about the same in depreciation over three years. The M135i is a little cheaper to insure, but the RS costs less to tax and service. Meanwhile, in our real-world fuel economy tests the RS averaged just shy of 30mpg. We weren’t able to test the manual M135i, but the automatic gearbox version managed 32.1mpg. So, considering all the bills you’ll face over three years, the M135i is fractionally cheaper.

Ford Focus RS vs BMW M135i

It’s the same story if you’re taking out finance. Put down a £5000 deposit on a 36-month PCP deal and you’ll pay £309 a month for the M135i compared with £357 for the Focus RS. Both of these deals have an annual mileage limit of 12,000.The M135i’s higher C02 emissions make it the pricer option for company car drivers, though; expect to sacrifice an extra £1336 of your salary over three years if you’re a 40% taxpayer. However, the M135i will cost you around £80 a month less if you’re leasing.

Both are fairly well equipped, with climate control, a DAB radio, Bluetooth and automatic lights and wipers as standard. The M135i’s main advantage is its standard-fit sat-nav (it’s a £465 option on the RS, although this also adds an upgraded stereo and a reversing camera). However, the RS also comes with bigger alloys and a host of other kit, including adaptive dampers (a £515 option on the M135i) and launch control. The RS’s options are limited; highlights include the £1000 Luxury Pack (rear parking sensors, folding mirrors, keyless entry, cruise control and privacy glass), race-style seats (£1145) and lightweight wheels (£595). There’s far more choice with the M135i, including a £480 Comfort Package that provides rear parking sensors and cruise control.