Audi A3 review - Practicality, comfort and boot space
The Audi A3 offers usable practicality with premium levels of comfort.
With no three-door or convertible models available, the A3 range consists of the more practical five-door Sportback and the four-door Saloon versions. Factor in the efficient engine line-up and a choice of fine manual or auto gearboxes, and the A3 not only offers premium luxury, but is also a functional, family-friendly proposition.
The Audi A3 has always provided premium levels of comfort, even if you opt for the stiffer sports suspension that comes with S line-spec models. The seats are comfortable and the cabin is well insulated from road noise, making the A3 a particularly pleasant place to be.
The lack of wind noise and impressive mpg figures have been helped by the introduction of movable air inlets and a smoother underbody, which help to improve the airflow and reduce unwanted fuel-sapping drag.
Specifying a car in Sport trim or above brings a useful split-folding rear bench seat - folding fully, or in a 40:20:40 configuration. It also includes a centre armrest with cup holders.
The A3 is 4,343mm long, 1,984mm wide (including mirrors) and stands 1,425 tall. Mercedes’ A-Class is a little longer at 4,445mm, slightly wider at 1,992mm, but has a lower roofline with an overall height of 1,412mm.
Leg room, head room & passenger space
The fourth-generation A3 is slightly longer and wider than its predecessor, and this brings the advantages of increased head and legroom throughout the cabin. Four passengers can sit in complete comfort, with the rear middle seat best used for shorter journeys.
Storage space for the A3 is pretty decent - the Sportback model offers 380 litres of load capacity with all the seats in place, while the boot is well-designed with a wide opening and no awkward lip to get luggage over.
The A3 Saloon has a 425-litre boot, which is five litres up on the four-door A-Class.
In this review
- 1Audi A3 reviewSubtle exterior changes and a tech-laden interior help the Audi A3 maintain its position as a premium family hatchback.
- 2Engines, performance and driveAudi offers refined and capable engines for the A3, while the diesel units are particularly frugal.
- 3MPG, CO2 and running costsThe A3 has strong, efficient petrol and diesel engines, with plug-in hybrid power soon to join the range.
- 4Interior, design and technologyUnderstated on the outside, cutting-edge on the inside, the Audi A3 is a classy, tech-filled family hatchback.
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot space - currently readingThe Audi A3 offers usable practicality with premium levels of comfort.
- 6Reliability and safetySafety kit for the A3 is excellent, while reliability should be equally as reassuring.