Audi A3 Cabriolet
Price £26,875 - £40,670
- Fast-folding roof
- Economical engines
- More space than old model
- Less fun than a BMW 1 Series
- Cramped rear seats
- Expensive to buy
At a glance
"The Audi A3 Cabriolet looks great – as well as being faster and more fuel-efficient than its predecessor."
The Audi A3 Cabriolet is a relatively small but stylish convertible that offers buyers a smart interior, an impressive choice of engines and some good fun on the open road. As you’d expect, it has much in common with the Audi A3 hatchback on which it's based.
The A3 Cabriolet has few direct rivals, so most people will weigh it up against either the BMW 2 Series convertible or the slightly cheaper Volkswagen Golf Cabriolet. The VW has less of the badge appeal of the Audi and the BMW, and the interior is noticeably less stylish, but the difference in price will prove compelling for some.
The latest Audi A3 Cabriolet is bigger than its predecessor but because of the convertible roof it still doesn’t offer the same amount of boot space as the hatchback.
The folding fabric roof can be retracted in 18 seconds at speeds of up to 31mph, meaning it's no disaster if the changeable British weather catches you out while driving with the roof down.
Despite an increase in size, the A3 Cabriolet is lighter than before, meaning it handles better, is quicker in a straight line and is more economical too. If you include the performance-orientated S3 model, there are three petrol engines to choose from, plus three diesels. The most economical version of the car is the 1.6-litre diesel model, which is capable of just over 70mpg.
If engaging handling and performance are your number one priority, then the rear-wheel drive BMW 2 Series convertible should be top of your list. For most people, however, the A3 Cabriolet's competent performance will be sufficient; the car doesn’t roll in corners and there's lots of grip, especially if you go for a model fitted with Audi's quattro four-wheel drive system.
All A3 Cabriolets come with a 5.8-inch display screen, alloy wheels, Bluetooth phone connectivity, dual-zone climate control and a triple-layer electric folding roof that doesn't let too much noise in on the motorway.
The Audi A3 Cabriolet comes with a sophisticated range of engines that offers low running costs
The Audi A3 Cabriolet is a competent performer, but not as much fun to drive as a BMW 2 Series convertible
Lovely interior, but you have to spec your Audi A3 Cabriolet carefully to get a comfortable ride
The Audi A3 Cabriolet has a bigger boot than the model it replaces, but still has less luggage space than the hatchback
The Audi A3 is rated highly by owners and safety in the Cabriolet has been bolstered to make up for the lack of a metal roof