Audi A3 review by TopGear

The definitive example of rock-solid, sensible, impeccable German engineering. Lovely chassis and a good breadth of ability.

  • Comfort

    It rides nicely too, with decent compliance over small-depth irritations in the surface and softness on bigger stuff. If the road has a lot of three-dimensional corners, you might want better damping. There's also an optional set of magnetic ride dampers. Link them to the standard suspension, and you might well have the answer.

    Rated 6 out of 10
  • Performance

    The A3 launches with three engines, a sweet 1.4-litre TFSI and a punchy, silky-smooth 1.8-litre TFSI. The one most people will buy though, is the 150bhp 2.0-litre TDI. Again, this is all-new, and is astonishingly quiet. Nothing wrong with its power delivery, torque-filled punch or freedom to rev, either.

    Rated 7 out of 10
  • Cool

    Too boring to be really cool. 

    Rated 6 out of 10
  • Quality

    Excellent – Audi knows how to make cars feel nicely put together. Prod and push this cabin – you won’t be disappointed. Prod it again after 100,000 miles – ditto. 

    Rated 8 out of 10
  • Handling

    Because the new A3 has been engineered to use lightweight parts, particularly up front, it has a lithe lightness on the road that the old A3 never had. Seriously - the handling is light-footed and playful in a way no mainstream Audi has yet managed. It grips hard, hardly understeers, and even generates a semblance of feedback through the steering.

    Rated 7 out of 10
  • Practicality

    Only comes in a three door initially, but rest assured more doors will follow in due course. 

    Rated 6 out of 10
  • Running costs

    The 2.0-litre diesel is the one to go for if money-saving is your bag: 68.9mpg and just 106g/km of CO2. That's good.

    Rated 8 out of 10

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