Used Audi A3 (13-present) long term test

The Audi A3 is our used family car winner, but does it still make for a great second-hand purchase with a revised 1.5-litre engine? We have six months to find out...

Used Audi A3 park assist
  • The car 2018 Audi A3 Sportback 1.5 150 TFSI Sport

  • Run by Max Adams, used cars reporter
  • Why it’s here To find out if our 2019 used family car of the year still represents a stonking used purchase
  • Needs to Prove that it’s worth the premium over lesser family cars, and whether this latest 1.5 TFSI engine is as good as the old 1.4 engine

Price when new £30,695 (including £5560 worth of options) Value on arrival £19,629 (trade, no options) Value now £18,813 (trade in) Miles on arrival 4037 Mileage now 6273 Official economy 55.4mpg Test economy 47.8mpg

19 March 2019 - Parking problems

The Audi A3 and I are getting along fine presently. In the 2500 miles I’ve covered in it so far, it’s fair to say that I’ve prodded every button and tried out every function that I can find. I’ve even probed Audi Connect to find out what the current fuel prices are in the local area.

Used A3 Audi connect

However, there is one function on the car that hasn’t been so helpful: Park Assist.

Now, Park Assist was a fairly inexpensive option when new, but that doesn’t offer any excuses for why it is so inept at doing the one thing it’s supposed to assist with.

I mentioned previous experience with such systems in my first report, but I was still surprised to find that Audi's had positioned the A3 diagonally in the bay. If you had done that on your driving test, you would probably have failed.

The problem was a dreadfully simple one: it had copied the dreadful parking of the car in the next bay and parked parallel to that. Granted, this wouldn’t be so much of an issue if the car next to you were parked properly.

Used Audi A3 park assist

But there’s another issue with these systems that needs to be addressed. It's one brought on by having to complete the manoeuvre from a 90-degree angle to the bay. When you or I reverse park, we swing the nose of the car out to reduce this angle and allow us to back into the bay in one go. But self-parking systems can’t do that, so they end up taking two attempts to get in, which makes the whole process needlessly slow.

All in all, I’m not convinced by self-parking systems, but then I’m quite happy to park a car myself. Even if it was a cheap option when new, such a feature adds nothing to the value of a used car – at least in the case of my Audi A3.

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