Used test: BMW M140i vs Mercedes-AMG A35 - verdict

Buy either of these two thrilling hot hatches at 18 months old and you'll save a pretty penny, but which one will put the bigger grin on your face?...

BMW M140i and Mercedes-AMG A35 from behind

Our verdict

Although we like the latest M135i, there will always be those who will hanker after this earlier M140i’s delicious rear-wheel-drive handling balance and that fruity and rather brilliant six-cylinder engine. Add in a saving of £11,000 and it’s easy to be swayed. 

After all, the best hot hatches are all about the raw pleasure of driving, and how this is achieved varies. For example, the Honda Civic Type R’s brilliance lies in its magnificent poise and delicacy and the Renault Mégane RS’s in its more flamboyant handling. 

Ultimately, neither the M140i nor the A35 is quite at their level. The A35 strikes a fair balance between fun and usability, but it misses out on the handling delicacy, and the gearbox really frustrates. Crucially, the M140i is more fun, thanks to its handling balance and engine. That, and the better value it offers at this age, are the reasons why it edges the win.

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1st – BMW M140i

BMW 140i front studio

For More engaging handling; comfier ride; superb engine; excellent infotainment

Against Trickier to drive in the wet; cramped rear seats; offset driving position

4 out of 5 stars

Read the full used BMW M140i review 

Find used BMW M140i for sale>>


2nd – Mercedes-AMG A35

Mercedes-AMG A35 front studio

For Great traction; stylish interior; stronger resale values

Against Less handling finesse; annoying gearbox; engine note tuneless

3 out of 5 stars

Read the full used Mercedes-AMG A35 review

Find used Mercedes-AMG A35 for sale>>


Specifications: BMW M140i

  • Engine size 3.0-litre petrol
  • Power 335bhp
  • Torque 369lb ft
  • 0-60mph 5.0sec
  • Top speed 155mph
  • Fuel economy 32.5mpg (official average)
  • CO2 emissions 168g/km

Specifications: Mercedes-AMG A35

  • Engine size 2.0-litre petrol
  • Power 302bhp
  • Torque 295lb ft
  • 0-60mph 4.8sec
  • Top speed 155mph
  • Fuel economy 35.8mpg (official average)
  • CO2 emissions 167g/km

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