The A3 is a lovely sports car that comes in 3 different models – the sportback, saloon and hatch and they’re actually pretty similar besides the passenger and luggage space. They are all fast and have an option to come as an S3 with the Sportback trim having an additional RS3 and e-tron hybrid options.
The basic level trim comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, a 5.8-inch colour screen, DAB digital radio, eight speakers, Bluetooth and heated washer jets. Going up the line to the S line gets you additional half-leather upholstery, a sports steering wheel, extra storage nets and compartments, an S line body styling kit and xenon headlights.
The latest models for the A3 also all come with a reversing camera and parking sensors although automatic braking is not given standard. More safety features can be added in, for a price but otherwise, the A3 ranks with the full 5 stars on the ANCAP safety rating scale.
You can’t quite go wrong with the Audi A3 and all the controls inside make it easy to use due to its easy and logical placements. The seats are adjustable in enough ways for anybody to get comfortable in the driver’s chair and the ride is super quiet, cutting out most of the tyre, wind and road noise. The steering has also improved to a point that the previous generations of the A3 can’t compare to the current ease of handling too. Some minor gripes we had were about the suspension being a bit firm on the bigger wheels or sports suspensions, but those can be configured to your preference without much issue (or extra money).
Ride comfort can be too firm if you go for larger wheels and the Sport or S line suspension set-up. But thankfully it’s possible to replace that suspension with a more comfortable configuration at no extra cost. Besides that, you may feel the extra weight affecting performance in the Sportback and Saloon, but nothing that would smear the good name of an Audi engine by much.
Between the 3 models, the saloon option gives you 60 litres more boot space at 425 litres compared to the hatchback, but because of the way it’s built, you might prefer the sportback for the more practical 5th door at the back for loading things in. Coupled with 60:40 split folding seats, the sportback can bring you all the way up to 1220 litres of space. If you opt for the 4 wheel drive, you’ll lose about 40 litres there so plan well before you opt for the extras.
Passengers will get the most space in the saloon though but all round, the seat comfort and support are good and the air vents provide a good amount of ventilation to whoever is sitting back there. The front seats have fantastic ergonomics too, from the controls, steering wheel and seating positions, and that’s what you get when you shell out for a car from this brand.
The A3 is an impressive car with an illustrious lineage which gives you great design, engines and cabin quality. The drive can be a bit firm for those who aren’t used to is, but there are always options to smooth that problem away if you’re willing to pay a bit more for it. If the price is stopping you from getting the A3, you can take a look at the car finance rates that the Smarter Finance Company offers you and see whether you can work out a way to drive this car home today!