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Used test: Audi A3 vs BMW 1 Series costs

These two premium family cars are fantastic used buys, but is it the Audi A3 or BMW 1 Series that impresses most?...

Audi A3 Sportback vs BMW 1 Series vs Infiniti Q30: What will they cost?

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

These two 2016 cars come in at around £11,000 each in the specifications of our respective test cars.  The Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series were similarly priced when new and both have seen near-identical deprecation, so we'd expect this to continue as time goes forward. 

The 1 Series will cost you more on fuel, mind you. During our testing, it averaged 35.0mpg – the A3 has a much better real-world figure, that being 42.5mpg. 

Audi A3 Sportback vs BMW 1 Series vs Infiniti Q30: What will they cost?

For two services of the A3, we were quoted £516 via Audi. Two services of the 1 Series via BMW proved pricier – we were quoted £900. 

The A3 belongs to insurance group 19, putting costs at around £580. The 1 Series sits in group 18, meaning insuring it should prove slightly cheaper at around £562. 

Both of these cars come with Bluetooth and climate control (dual-zone on the A3, single-zone on the 1 Series). The 1 Series is guaranteed to have auto lights and wipers, whereas the A3 might not have them – they were optional on the A3 when it was new. Features like heated front seats, cruise control and power-folding door mirrors were optional extras on both cars as well. 

New Mercedes-Benz A-Class vs Audi A3 Sportback vs BMW 1 Series

In our 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey, the 1 Series performed impeccably. Thanks to its 100% reliability rating, it ranked first out of 29 cars in the family car class. The A3 came 15th, with a rating of 91.4%. As brands, BMW ranked 12th out of 32 manufacturers featured, while Audi placed 26th. 

Euro NCAP gave the A3 and 1 Series its maximum five-star rating for safety, albeit back when testing was a lot less stringent than it is today – hence they weren't marked down for lacking standard automatic emergency city braking and lane departure warning. 

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