New Audi RS3 vs Mercedes-AMG 45: costs

Both of these hot hatches are bonkers fast. But is Audi's latest RS3 good enough to see off its thrilling Mercedes-AMG rival?...

Audi RS3 2022 exhausts

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

By hot hatch standards, the Mercedes A45 has always been astronomically expensive to buy, and the recent removal of the entry-level trim hasn’t helped matters. The only version you can buy now is the snappily titled A45 S 4Matic+ Plus and starts at just under £58,000.

The Audi RS3 is available for less (from £53,830), but then you miss out on some desirables, such as the black styling pack (black wheels, spoiler and front Audi badge), matrix LED headlights and the sports exhaust we mentioned earlier. Go for the Carbon Black version we’ve lined up here and you’ll be spending at least £58,480 – and that’s before you’ve forked out for the highly recommended adaptive suspension.

Mercedes-AMG A45 S brakes

You even get a few more luxuries with the A45. On top of a rear-view camera and a panoramic glass roof, there’s keyless entry and traffic sign recognition – although surprisingly, both manufacturers charge extra for adaptive cruise control.

What if we look at long-term ownership costs, though? Slower predicted depreciation makes the RS3 a cheaper ownership proposition over three years for anyone paying cash, although those signing up to a PCP finance deal will pay less for the A45. Put down a £6000 deposit and you’ll pay £691 per month over the next four years, compared with £720 for the RS3. Both deals assume a limit of 10,000 miles per year.

Audi RS3 vs Mercedes-AMG A45 costs

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