If you are a modern professional without a family or someone who needs a car that makes an impression on the road without needing to be too big, then you should be looking towards an executive hatchback. What do we mean by that? Well, these are cars that are the same size as small hatchbacks – the popular Ford Fiesta, Vauxhall Corsa, Renault Clio etc. – but have the style and prestige required to make it a suitable business car. That’s not to say the Fiesta and Clio can’t work as a business car, but they don’t have the same level of prestige as those made by the iconic German manufacturers.

Two of the best small executive cars are the Mercedes A-Class and the BMW 1 Series. Combining that famous German efficiency with a sense of style and class that lifts it above its small stature. But how do they compare? Here’s our look at the Mercedes A-Class vs BMW 1 Series.

Mercedes A-Class


Described as comfortable and luxurious by its maker, the Mercedes A-Class has been one of the best premium hatchbacks on the market since its debut back in 1997. It has the iconic Mercedes front grille, with the three blades of the logo dominating the centre. The curves are a lot sleeker than they used to be, as design standards move toward crumple zones and aerodynamics, meaning cars have less uniqueness than they once had.

Inside, it’s like flying in first class. Ridiculously comfy seats, all the gadgets and mod-cons you could want in a car of this spec and price, and safety features that make driving so much easier. Which means you can relax behind the wheel as you cruise to your next meeting.

What the experts say about the A-Class

WhatCar? magazine said the car is an exciting small hatchback. While not quite as agile as the Audi A1, its bold looks and interior styling make it a fantastic option. Auto Express magazine go even further, saying that the A-Class is best-in-class, mainly down to the exquisite interior.

BMW 1-Series


The BMW 3 Series has been the best in its class for a long time. So it’s good to see that the 1-Series takes a lot of the wins from its bigger sister and places them in a smaller package. One of its strengths is how fun it is to drive. The handling is great, and with the right engine choice you can feel some real power in its rear-wheel drive.

The interior is no slouch either, with the infotainment system one of the best on the market. All the controls have been well placed, so you have complete control without taking your eyes off the road. Meaning you can drive in complete comfort at all times.

What the experts say about the 1 Series

Top Gear magazine were effusive about the range of engines available. They liked how quiet it was on the road too, adding to that sense of comfort. Auto Express loved how it excelled across all the key areas – performance, efficiency and how thrilling it is to drive.

Which should you buy?

Both are excellent premium hatchbacks. The BMW 1 Series has the fun factor in terms of driving, so if that’s important to you, it has the edge. The A-Class has more of a premium feel and the interior is a bit fancier too. Either option is a great choice, so why not take a look at both and see which one grabs your attention more?


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