As regular readers, you have long known that we are regularly drawn out into the woods for hours of romantic driving. One example of where we prefer to retreat to is shown in the photo series of this comparison – on roads that barely fit through two rows of trees and whose curve exits seem to end straight in the thicket. Our favorite routes are narrow and pathetically asphalted, winding their way in confusion over hilltops, hills and mountains.
Sports cars in compact format: what powerful turbo engines and all-wheel drive make of the BMW 1 Series and Mercedes A-Class is revealed at the end.
In between, the view is allowed to widen and the field to open up, as long as the next stand of trees greets you on the horizon. Because where there is forest, there are usually hills. And elevations want to be curved around. And curves are the essence of active driving. That’s what the BMW M135i and Mercedes-AMG A 35 tested here are dedicated to – which is why we set off with them straight to our favorite curves.
Top model and newcomer
What luck, the conditions are excellent: the sun is shining, the asphalt is gripping, and the temperatures are sufficient for the tires not to catch cold. For difficult traction tasks, both test cars are equipped with all-wheel drive as standard. If necessary, the rear axle rushes to the rescue and transfers some of the power. Speaking of power: the two-liter turbo in the AMG presses 400 Nm onto the crankshaft, and the BMW even delivers 450. Both produce 306 hp.
The 1 Series is the top model in the range, while the A-Class is the entry-level variant of three AMG models available. This difference will become important in the course of the assessment, because it says a lot about the character of the two rivals.