Is The Audi RS3 Sportback Better Than The Mercedes-AMG A45?

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The Mercedes-AMG A45 used to be the hot hatch king, until Audi introduced the facelifted RS3 Sportback earlier this year.

Ingolstadt's performance model makes an impressive 400PS (395hp) and 480Nm (354lb-ft) of torque, from a 2.5-liter five-cylinder turbocharged engine. Naught to 100km/h (62mph) takes 4.1sec, and top speed is electronically capped at 250km/h (155mph), or 280km/h (174mph), depending on the selected options.

Head over to Mercedes and you will find that the AMG A45 has similar numbers: 381PS (376hp) and 475Nm (350lb-ft) of torque, produced by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. This hot hatch needs 4.2sec to cover the 0 to 100km/h (62mph) sprint, and has the same electronically limited top speed of 250km/h (155mph).

With these numbers, which used to be reserved for supercars until not that long ago, it's not easy to choose one of the two, especially when they appear to be even faster from naught to 100km/h in the real world. However, there's more than meets the eye, according to CarWow's Mat Watson, who went for a drive in both machines and came up with a result that may surprise you.