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Comparison: 2022 Audi A4 Sedan versus 2021 BMW 3 Series Sedan

Find out which one of this pair of German compact luxury sports sedans is the best overall value.


2022 Audi A4 Sedan

Starting Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price: $43,300 CAD


  • Style, tech, refinement
  •  Lower-priced 40 TFSI trim
  • Reasonable pricing


  •  Small trunk
  •  S4 can’t match M340i’s horsepower
  •  Ride and handling leans towards comfort


2022 Audi A4 Sedan – Highlights

After a major revamp in 2020, this generation of A4 compact luxury sports sedan—launched in 2017—remains at the top of its class. For those who don’t need a truck or SUV utility, the 5-passenger A4 can engage buyers who understand and appreciate the joys of driving a well-balanced car with a low centre of gravity while packing an abundance of style, tech, and refinement.

The experience of driving an A4 goes from pleasant to absolutely thrilling. The $43,300 base 40 TFSI quattro trim gets an effervescent 201 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque 2.0-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission and Audi’s quattro all-wheel-drive (AWD) system. The $46,700 45 TFSI quattro uses the same powertrain but produces 261 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. It also has a greater ability to push the A4’s nicely calibrated suspension that tackles corners with composure yet still delivers a forgiving ride on the straights. The steering also has an ideal amount of weight and feel.

The $61,100 S4’s considerable 349 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque from its turbocharged 3.0-litre 6-cylinder engine is for luxury sports sedan buyers seeking more driving thrills. The S4 is enhanced by an optional limited-slip rear differential and an adaptive suspension that changes its settings within milliseconds to optimize handling and dynamics.

Honed, distilled, ergonomic. Plush, but not overdone. The A4 shares an interior design approach with the rest of the Audi portfolio, where every curve and surface has been agonized over and then made to look like one harmonious whole. Although the A4 is a compact sedan, occupant space is good for the class, with more rear legroom than its BMW rival.


2021 BMW 3 Series Sedan 

Starting Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price: $49,350 CAD


  • Powerful and fuel-efficient engines
  •  Entertaining driving manners
  •  Roomy trunk


  •  Pricier than some rivals
  • Tight rear seat


2021 BMW 3 Series Sedan – Highlights

This 7th-generation 3 Series compact luxury sports sedan, revamped last year, is packed with the latest technology and safety features, and its performance ranges from good to excellent. Separate from the high-performance M3 and new plug-in gas-electric PHEV models, the gas-engine 3 Series Sedan models start with the base, $49,350 330i xDrive, with its 2.0-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder that produces 255 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. A rival to the S4, the $62,900 M340i xDrive is powered by a 3.0-litre turbocharged 6-cylinder making 382 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. Both trims use an 8-speed automatic transmission and AWD.

The 3 Series Sedan’s interior is clean and elegant but not revolutionary. Some might find the 5-passenger environment a little clinical and sterile, but there’s more room up front than what you’ll find in the Audi rival. The overall build quality is excellent, and the calibre of the interior materials is high. A split-folding 40/20/40 rear seat provides access to a 369-litre-rear trunk—29 litres more than the A4.

While the Audi A4 is athletic, the 3 Series shines brighter as a quick and agile sports sedan. The entry-level 330i xDrive is acceptable in terms of driving and performance. Its ride quality is taut but supple, able to please most enthusiastic drivers. Drivers can dial up an even sportier feel via this BMW’s adjustable suspension settings. 

On the other hand, the potent BMW M340i, new last year, proves that BMW still has the magic touch. With a proper inline-6 under the hood and a performance-tuned chassis, the M340i lives up to its high-performance billing with its tenacious grip and smooth automatic transmission that shifts when expected.


Final Recommendation

For years, the Audi A4 Sedan and BMW 3 Series Sedan have set the bar for the compact luxury sports sedan segment. For drivers looking for a sophisticated and engaging experience, both of these German-brand vehicles will delight.

The 2022 A4 shines with its classy styling, loads of tech and overall refinement. And the base 40 TFSI Quattro trim offers a lower entry price point than the base 330i xDrive trim.

However, if you're looking for the purest compact luxury sports sedan experience, we think the BMW is the better choice. The 2021 3 Series Sedan delivers more powerful and fuel-efficient engines and livelier driving dynamics while offering more rear-seat passenger and trunk space than its Audi rival.



2022 Audi A4 Sedan

2021 BMW 3 Series Sedan


2.0-litre Turbocharged I4

3.0-litre Turbocharged V6

2.0-litre Turbocharged I4

3.0-litre Turbocharged I6


2.0T/40 - 201 horsepower @ 4,475-6,000 rpm

2.0T/45 - 261 horsepower @ 5,250-6,500 rpm

3.0T - 349 horsepower @ 5,400-6,400 rpm

2.0T -255 horsepower @ 5,000 rpm

3.0T -382 horsepower @ 5,800 rpm


2.0T/40 - 236 lb-ft of torque @ 1,450-4,475 rpm

2.0T 45 - 273 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600-4,500 rpm

3.0T 45 - 369 lb-ft of torque @ 1,370-4,500 rpm

2.0T - 295 lb-ft of torque @ 1,550-4,400 rpm

3.0T - 369 lb-ft of torque @ 5,000 rpm


7-speed automatic

8-speed automatic

Fuel Economy

2.0T/40 - 8.2 L/100 km (9.1 city, 7.0 hwy)

2.0T/45 - 8.8 L/100 km (9.8 city, 7.6 hwy)

3.0T/45 – 9.7 L/100 km (11.1 city, 8.0 hwy)

2.0T – 8.3 L/100 km (9.5 city, 6.9 hwy)

3.0T – 9.2 L/100 km (10.5 city, 7.7 hwy)


4 years/80,000 km

4-years/80,000 km

Max Seating Capacity




2,819.4 mm

2,851 mm

Overall Length

4,762.5 mm

4,709 mm


2,021.8 mm

1,827 mm


1,427.5 mm

1,445 mm

Curb Weight

1,550 kg

1,672 kg

Headroom, Front

947.4 mm

983 mm

Headroom, Rear

950 mm

955 mm

Legroom, Front

1,049 mm

1,066.8 mm

Legroom, Rear

906.8 mm

894.1 mm

Shoulder Room, Front

1,419.9 mm

1,422.4 mm

Shoulder Room, Rear

1,384.3 mm

1,384.3 mm

Rear Trunk Cargo Volume

340 L

369 L


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