What used Audi A3 hatchback will I get for my budget?
The A3 has been a consistently big seller for Audi, so there are plenty of examples on the used car market. There’s little to choose between the petrol and diesel versions, but there are more diesels around.
Prices start at around £6000 for an early car from 2013 with more than 100,000 miles or possible Category D write-off issues. Move up to £7000 and you can bag yourself either a three-door or five-door car with less than 100,000 miles from 2013 or 2014, bought from an independent dealer with a good service history. Prices for the two variants seem fairly evenly matched on the used car market, although the added practicality of the extra doors just edges the Sportback ahead in the popularity stakes.
Shell out £9000 and upwards and you should find a 2014 A3 Sportback with an average mileage and full service history. Upping the wedge to between £12,000 and £14,000 should bring in a manufacturer-approved used facelifted A3 from 2016 that’s carrying a fairly nominal mileage.
If you’re interested in some of the specialty models, a 2015 A3 e-tron plug-in hybrid with less than 40,000 miles is about £16,500-£17,500. A well-kept 2014 S3 hot hatch with a full service history and 30,000-40,000 miles is around £18,000, while the RS3 from 2015 onwards will be about £31,000.
How much does it cost to run a Audi A3 hatchback?
When the A3 was launched in 2013, it offered a wide range of engines. The petrols include a 123bhp 1.4-litre unit (NEDC average of 55.4mpg and £30 annual road tax), a 178bhp 1.8-litre unit (48.7mpg and £140), and a 148bhp 1.4-litre unit that can automatically shut off two of its four cylinders at a cruise to save fuel. Audi calls it cylinder on demand, or CoD, and it helps cut fuel consumption down to 60.1mpg and only £20 for road tax.
Diesel engines included the popular 113bhp 1.6-litre unit and the 148bhp 2.0-litre unit, both of which are surprisingly refined. The 1.6 TDI should be the cheapest version to run, with CO2 emissions of just 99g/km in some models and 74.3mpg average economy, which means no road tax for cars registered before April 2017. The 2.0 TDI 150 isn't quite so efficient, with 67.3mpg and £20 road tax.
Various engines were introduced later on, including a 1.2-litre petrol that gets 57.6mpg and £30 road tax. But it was the 2016 facelift that brought a new 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine. This sweet and economical unit is great in town and never feels short of puff, and it returns an official NEDC average economy of 62.8mpg and is subject to £20 road tax.
The plug-in hybrid A3 e-tron is the most economical model on paper officially, at 176.6mpg, but you’ll need to charge the car after every journey and use the engine sparingly to get close to that.
All cars registered after April 2017 will cost you £140 per year in road tax, regardless of the engine. Just be careful of some of the high-performance models, such as the RS3, because if the original retail price was over £40,000, you’ll be subject to an additional £310 fee every year until it's six years old.
Servicing on the A3 is due every two years or 19,000 miles, with Audi main dealers offering a comprehensive service plan for cars three years old and older. This provides an interim service for £164 and a main service for £319. From new, many A3s were covered by an Audi Service Plan that could be used to cover the cost of routine servicing for up to five years or 50,000 miles.
The A3 was also covered by a three-year/60,000-mile warranty from new, with the option of an extended four or five-year cover.
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