Audi A3 hatchback: stylish and high-tech interior
What the motoring press is saying about the Audi A3 hatchback
Price: £24,410 - £26,560
Pros: Interior is advanced and stylish, comfortable to drive, efficient engine
Cons: Space in the back is tight, doesn't handle as well as BMW 1 series, unoriginal design
"The Audi A3 was the original small posh hatch, followed swiftly by the Mercedes-Benz A-Class then the BMW 1 Series. More recently it has been attacked by ever-higher quality Volkswagen Golfs and Ford Focuses, but the latest A3 moves the game on significantly. It's now the most premium of premium small hatchbacks with the familiar Audi head-turning looks, but with a new sense of style inside. Interior quality has moved up another step, too, while it's a gadget lover's delight with lots of hi-tech equipment. There's a range of advanced, efficient petrol and diesel engines, while a greater emphasis on ride quality makes it more comfortable. There's more space inside than in the mark two Audi A3. It now provides far greater opposition for the 1 Series and A-Class, as well as more mainstream hatchbacks."
4/5, Auto Express
"So plenty has changed, apart from the looks. Audi itself describes the new A3 as evolutionary, but man has evolved faster than the look of Audi's line-up. The goatee grill remains but there's slightly slimmer headlights, a sharper crease along the sides and larger rear lights. It looks like more of a facelift than an all-new car, but such is the way of Audi's design these days – it probably won’t harm sales: Audi's lookalike line-up helped the marque to a record year in 2011, with 2012 set to grow even further."
4/5, What Car?
"Don’t be fooled, though. The latest A3 is built on a new platform that will also underpin the next generation Volkswagen Golf. There are big efficiency gains; engine stop-start is now standard across the range, and Audi has used aluminium and high-strength steel to help make the new car up to 80kg lighter than the old one."
4/5, Honest John
New Audi A3 goes on sale in the UK from September 2012 with prices starting at around £19,000. Five-door Sportback from later in 2012. A3 styling takes inspiration from Audi's current line-up with the front end very similar to the recently revised A4 range while rear echoes new A6 saloon. From the side it's still recognisable as an A3 and despite not being exactly a big departure in terms of looks, it's a neat design. ·