2018 Audi RS3 vs. M140i Comparison Has Drifting

These two have been arch-rivals since the M135i came out all those years ago. In that time, Audi launched an all-new RS3 and gave it a significant mid-life refresh this year while the M140i is already a year old.
2018 Audi RS3 vs. M140i Comparison Has Drifting 5 photos
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2018 Audi RS3 vs. M140i Comparison Has Drifting2018 Audi RS3 vs. M140i Comparison Has Drifting2018 Audi RS3 vs. M140i Comparison Has Drifting2018 Audi RS3 vs. M140i Comparison Has Drifting
A depressing thought just crossed our minds though: as BMW is moving the 1 Series to a front-wheel drive platform and its new M135i will only have 300 horsepower, things will never be the same.

But that's precisely why we need to celebrate the M140i and what it brings to the table. For the same money as a Honda Civic Type R, you can have a small BMW with rear-wheel drive and a 340 PS 3-liter turbo engine. It's an unbeatable offer that can only be improved by the availability of xDrive and the 8-speed auto.

If you're after that car that can put a grin on your face, this could very well be it. During most of this Autocar review, the M140i is seen with some sideways angle on it.

But if it's the fastest hatch you're after, the one that covers ground faster than you'd imagined, the 2018 Audi RS3 should be your prime pick. It's still got some understeer, but the engineers have made it handle better than before, and the aluminum 2.5-liter engine now makes 400 PS, 60 more than the Bimmer.

We've just shown you how nothing in this segment can keep up with the RS3 in a straight line. And with a price tag about 50% higher than the M140i, the Audi can afford the kind of tech that makes it faster around a track too: better tires, optional ceramic brakes, and exotic engine bits.

It's not all about how fast you can go. A couple of years from now, there's going to be an even faster A45, but you're still going to be having more fun in the naturally-balanced M140i.

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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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