3.9 out of 5 3.9
Parkers overall rating: 3.9 out of 5 3.9

Sharpened looks and more tech for capable premium hatchback

Audi A3 Sportback Review Video
Enlarge 1 videos Enlarge 53 photos

At a glance

New price £23,300 - £40,330
Lease from new From £195 p/m View lease deals
Used price £17,620 - £34,580
Used monthly cost From £440 per month
Fuel Economy 34.4 - 65.7 mpg
Road tax cost £150
Insurance group 17 - 34 How much is it to insure?
New

PROS

  • More engaging to drive than before
  • Highly efficient engine range
  • Sharp, desirable exterior design
  • High-quality technology

CONS

  • Not the cheapest of its direct rivals
  • Interior space only average
  • Some iffy interior materials
  • Inferior rear suspension on cheaper models

Audi A3 Sportback rivals

Written by Jake Groves on

The new Audi A3 Sportback is the mid-sized hatchback for people who want to inject some premium polish into their daily life. This fourth-generation car cracks the conservative style mould in favour of a more youthful design that’s matched with a high-tech and rather classy interior.

A similarly styled Saloon version will follow later in 2020 while the Sportback (that's Audi slang for five-door hatch) is available now. Audi’s hoping motorists who’ve enjoyed owning earlier A3s will be tempted to upgrade.

Audi has ditched the less-practical three-door model, in line with the BMW 1 Series and Mercedes-Benz A-Class. The current A3 is slightly longer and wider than before with marginally improved space inside.

What engine and trim options are there?

Audi offers buyers a broad choice of engines, starting with a 150hp 1.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol unit, badged as the 35 TFSI, and a 150hp 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder diesel called the 35 TDI. A more economical 116hp 2.0-litre diesel called the 30 TDI will follow, along with a mild hybrid version of the petrol engine. Later on there will also be a plug-in hybrid version of the A3 with around 37 miles of battery-only driving range.

The Audi A3 is available in Technik, Sport and S line specification grades. Following market introduction it will also be offered in higher-spec Edition 1 and Vorsprung guises. Buyers can also choose from package upgrades to avail of items like driver assistance and upgraded stereo systems at a better price.

If you’re after performance, the 310hp S3 joined the range in August 2020, with regular, Vorsprung and early-adopter Edition 1 trim options to match the rest of the A3 range.

The latest Audi couture is wrapped around familiar oily bits - in essence, this is a VW Golf in a posher suit. You won’t mistake it for anything but an Audi, although the designers have tried to inject some more interest this time round, to help the A3 Sportback stand out from the crowd.

So there are more overly-designed headlamps, whose day-running lights are made up of 15 individual pinprick LEDs, allowing for a different light signature depending on the model you choose. So sportier models will have one sparkly pattern, plug-in hybrids another. Games of family I Spy on the motorway will never be quite the same again.

On paper, there isn’t much to separate the A3 from its most direct rivals, the 1 Series and A-Class, though it isn’t the cheapest one. That said, Audi does offer competitive finance and leasing deals.

Click through the next few pages to read everything you need to know about the Audi A3 Sportback including its practicality, how much it costs to run, what it's like to drive – and whether we recommend buying one.

Audi A3 Sportback rivals

Other Audi A3 models: