What are they like inside?
Climb into the Audi and you’ll notice ‘RS3’ badges on the gearknob and on the chunky flat-bottomed steering wheel. The pity is that these are the only clues that you aren’t sitting in a bog-standard A3. What’s more, the driving position feels strangely high up.
The BMW 1 M Coupe’s low-slung, figure-hugging seats give it a sportier feel, but the cabin is still rather humdrum. That said, the sliver of Alcantara, complete with contrast stitching, which runs across the dashboard, does make things feel a little more sporting.
With its five doors and hatchback boot, the RS3 is by far the more practical of the pair. It has as much space as any A3 saloon, with three rear seats – and while the central passenger in the back will have to put up with a hump in the floor, at least they can travel with you.
In the BMW, however, you can carry only two rear passengers – but they will at least have almost as much head, leg and shoulder room as those in the Audi.
The BMW is less compromised than you’d think in other areas too – it has the bigger boot, for example, although its opening makes the space trickier to access, while up front there’s more legroom and just as much headroom as the Audi.
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