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Cons: Silly slide out tray in dash above radio
Advice: Test drive the vehicle and see how fun and functional a hatch can be.The A3 is comfortable for my everyday commute with excellent driver position and visibility. DSG transmission makes for a sporty ride either in auto sport mode or with the paddles on the steering wheel. Excellent observed gas milleage of 29.7 mpg in mostly city driving. I love the sound the car makes as it shifts thru its six gears. This car is a great mix of sport and function with the hatch that makes those weekend getaways easy. Just open the hatch, throw in your stuff, open the sunroof and go.
Pros: The whole package is a driving daydream
Cons: Bose premium sound system
Advice: Tell your mate not to wait up.There are just too many great things to say about the new-to-America A3. My summary is this: all the good things you read are quite valid. The things you read that are negative are not for me to dispute but just know that we all look at things with our own unique set of expectations and past experiences. Go check this car out for yourself. I would give it a perfect 10 but frankly, the seats could use some work as the bottom is a bit too soft and the lumbar could use a bit more meat down there. That's the only reason I scored it less than excellent in 'comfort' It's quiet, everything works perfectly, the cockpit is perfect and there's just not much to gripe about. See my notes on the Bose 'premium' sound system. By all means, get the Sport package if you're a driver type that goes nuts each time you see a sweeper ahead of you. And get the DSG tranny too. What not to get? Definitely, DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY ON THE BOSE PREMIUM sound system. It's absolutely terrible. I wanted the Xenon lights option and my car came with the Bose sound system so I had to take it. It's gross and you'll be like me........shopping for ways to upgrade this miserable audio nightmare. And by the way.....XM radio sounds just horrible in this system. Avoid this piece of junk. Otherwise, the car is a genuine knockout sleeper. Contagious and addictive. Not showy and you avoid the status trap and you'll be $9,000 to the good versus buying a BMW 330. It's personal but I get a minute to minute thrill driving this car and I don't have to look down at my speedo to realize that I'm having fun as with some other performance cars which I've owned or driven. This one delivers just going out the driveway and down your neighborhood street and onto the freeway ramp.....from there things get real interesting. You'll likely be home late more than a few times as you find 'other routes' to drive home. Tell your partner/wife/husband/significant other ahead of time or you'll be under the sniff test each time you come home a hour or two later than usual.
Pros: DSG and sport seats.
Cons: Bluetooth not stadard and difficult (if not impossible) to retrofit.
Advice: If you like to drive somewhat aggresively, definitely get the Sport package -- much tougher suspension to get you through these tight corners without slowing down.This car is really without competition in its segment. You get a five-door car with a great trunk space (even greater if you fold down the rear seats), exceptional, AUDI-quality fit and finish, spirited performance, and two ultra-modern mechanical components - the FSI Turbo engine and DSG transmission. Performance for the engine size, price and gas mileage is one of the best (24-32 with DSG). It's been around in Europe for almost a decade so you can count on most bugs having been worked out. A very progressive package, with the way gas prices are going, it may just become America's favorite family car a couple years down the road. A great bargain -- similarly equipped low $30,000's A3 will run you over $50,000 in Europe! Test drive one with the sport package and DSG transmission and you'll fall in love with it.
Pros: The engine
Cons: The headroom for the front seats
Advice: Build your car on the Audi website and drive the car you will love it!I test drove the A3 the other day and found it to have quick and responsive steering. The interior was nicely appointed and I didn't experience any turbo lag from the 2.0 liter 200 horse power turbo charged engine. It was very fast and the ride was firm but not harsh. It soaked up bumps with a mild thud and the structure felt solid. The pricing was right for a fully loaded car, just under $35,000 for every option checked. I didn't drive the A3 with the DSG, so I cannot comment on that, but the 6-speed manual was silky smooth and I was able to find each gear with ease. It has short, precise throws with no turbo lag to think of. I am going to purchase one this week on special order with navigation and satellite radio, and the open sky dual sunroof. It is a great car, European looks and feel and sporty style to match.
Cons: Uncomfortable ride
Advice: Test drive it!Draw A3 today. Took one for a ride from Key Audi dealership in Jacksonville, Florida. I can say only the best for sales people from that dealership. They were not pushy and they were very helpful. They let me and my wife test drive it on our own. They gave us a black with beige interior, with premium package and DSG. Here’s what we think: Design We loved the exterior. We think that exterior design is very cool, appealing to younger generation. About the interior, we were divided. My wife didn’t like it at all, I was OK with it, and probably will grow to like it more. Steering It felt as steering wheel is not attached to anything at stop or slow speeds. As we gained speed it firmed up, but it was still way too soft. Now, I understand that thing can be easily programmed to make it stiffer, so it might be OK after all. Shifting DSG lives to its reputation. I would probably have to drive it longer to get it perfected, but it worked just fine. Although, when I was downshifting, it wouldn’t go below third gear, and braking with engine was not as noticeable as if it was manual. Engine Loud. Engine running, we’re outside waiting for salesman to bring plates, I was surprised how loud the engine was. It sounded almost as it was diesel. Inside was somewhat quieter, but still noisier that for example BMW 325i. It is fast. I was getting to 95mph so quick it was scary (think speeding tickets). One thing I didn’t like was moving from full stop there was a noticeable lag, unless I’d stepped on a pedal and forced it to move. Suspension Awkwardly rough. When we came back, salesman said that tires are probably still pumped at about 55lbs. I don’t know if that can account for so much roughness. I though that my ’95 Acura Integra with lowered suspension and 205/45 tires rides rough, but obviously it does not. We took the same route from the dealership, and compared with A3 it wasn’t so rough. Also, I just sold my ’93 BMW 325is that had busted strut bearings, and it was still smoother ride compared to A3. Conclusion Nice car altogether. I believe that it will definitely find market among younger generation if priced more attractively. They should offer some nice leases with 12-15k miles per year and they should be selling them like candies. For me, I’m going to get 2005 BMW. Models 325i and 330i have $2,500 and $4,200 incentive because of new 2006 models. That car is much more in line with what I need from a car.