What Car? says...
If your first thought when you see the Audi A3 Sportback is “Lamborghini Countach”, you’re either standing very far away from it or are part of Audi’s car design team.
You see, they quote the angular Italian supercar as one of the inspirations for the looks of this family hatchback. Taking the marketing spiel with a pinch of salt, it’s clear that the A3 Sportback's designers generally chose evolution, rather than revolution.
The latest Audi A3 didn’t feature in our 2021 What Car? Reliability Survey but the previous-generation (2013-2020) A3 finished joint 13th out of 29 models in the family car class. Audi has a less than stellar record, coming 18th out of 30 car makers. That’s ahead of Jaguar and Mercedes, but behind BMW, Lexus and Tesla. Read more here
While you can’t get the Audi A3 as a fully electric car, there are a couple of plug-in hybrid (PHEV) models: the 40 TFSIe and 45 TFSIe. The former is our pick of the A3 range, because it delivers punchy performance and can officially cover up to 40 miles on electric power alone. This makes it a very cheap company car choice. Read more here
We recommend the 40 TFSIe engine with Sport trim, which is reasonably priced and comes with a long list of equipment. Highlights include 17in alloy wheels, rear parking sensors, leather upholstery, dual-zone climate control, built-in sat-nav, and Apple Carplay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring. Safety kit includes automatic emergency braking (AEB) and a lane-departure warning system. Read more here
Upgrading the Audi A3 from Sport to S line trim brings a sportier look inside and out, with 18in (rather than 17in) alloy wheels, a muscular bodykit, darkened privacy glass and more heavily bolstered front seats. Read more here
Everything is controlled through a touchscreen, which is more distracting to use on the move than the physical control dial in the BMW 1 Series. However, Audi’s system does at least offer intuitive menus and quick responses. It also helps that you can operate many functions using steering wheel-mounted buttons linked to the Virtual Cockpit digital instrument display directly in front of the driver. Read more here
Most versions of the Audi A3 have a 380-litre boot, which is big enough for five carry-on suitcases and matches the capacity of the BMW 1 Series. However, like equivalent versions of the 1 Series, PHEV A3s have a significantly smaller capacity (280 litres in the case of the A3; 310 litres in the 1 Series) because the boot floor needs to be higher to accommodate the battery below it. Read more here
|RRP price range||£25,495 - £47,905|
|Number of trims (see all)||8|
|Number of engines (see all)||6|
|Available fuel types (which is best for you?)||hybrid, petrol, diesel|
|MPG range across all versions||217.3 - 61.4|
|Available doors options||5|
|Warranty||3 years / 60000 miles|
|Company car tax at 20% (min/max)||£493 / £3,471|
|Company car tax at 40% (min/max)||£985 / £6,942|