Skip advert
Advertisement
In-depth reviews

Audi A3 Sportback hatchback - Interior & comfort

The fourth-generation Audi A3 is more like a computer on wheels than before

Carbuyer Rating

4.2 out of 5

Owners Rating

2.0 out of 5

Read owner reviews
Interior & comfort Rating

4.5 out of 5

Along with its premium badge, the A3's main selling point has always been its upmarket interior. In fact, along with the BMW 1 Series, the A3 was one of the first cars to offer an executive class ownership experience in a smaller package; a trick countless hatchbacks and crossovers now try to pull off.

Advertisement - Article continues below

That said, pre-facelift fourth-generation cars had some areas in which lower-quality materials let the cabin down, but we’re happy to report that Audi has mostly rectified this with some upgraded trim, so it feels well and truly premium. Elsewhere there haven’t been any major updates, but the textured fabric design used on the dash has made the interior less sterile and a little more interesting.

For its fourth outing, Audi has focused on technology, with a big step-up in processing power for its infotainment system to keep occupants connected, provide real-time navigation updates and media, while also improving safety.

Audi A3 dashboard

There's a different feel to the driver's seat in the latest A3 because an angled dashboard, wide centre console and even the air vents on either side of the instruments, all lend it a focused, cockpit-like atmosphere. Soft-touch materials have been replaced with swathes of aluminium-style trim.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

None of the interior tech has been tweaked, so the A3 still uses a 10.1-inch infotainment system in the centre of the dash, and the driver gets a 12.3-inch digital driver’s display, dubbed ‘Virtual Cockpit’ by Audi. Some buyers may be disappointed that the large 15-inch display from the Volkswagen Golf isn’t offered here, but we think the Audi’s system works well and is no less impressive despite its smaller size. In fact, we appreciate the retainment of physical air-conditioning controls, which feel more intuitive to use on the move.

Advertisement - Article continues below

An automatic gearbox with a small toggle-like gear selector means designers have been able to get more creative with their design, making space for a slightly odd-shaped wireless charging smartphone pad below the centre console. There's also a small iPod-style controller for the stereo system but its functions are limited to changing the volume and skipping media tracks.

Equipment

The Audi A3 is offered in Sport, S Line and Black Edition trim levels. Sport models get 17-inch alloys and cloth seats, and a 10.1-inch infotainment screen with sat nav, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a 10.25-inch digital dash, dual-zone climate control, folding door mirrors and LED headlights as standard.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

S line alters the A3's looks with 18-inch wheels, LED rear lights with sweeping indicators, an auto high beam system, privacy glass, sports seats embossed with the S Line logo, leather upholstery and ambient interior lighting. Sport suspension also gives the car a 15mm lower ride height for improved agility. It's a desirable makeover that seems to strike a chord with UK buyers.

Black Edition gets an even more premium feel, adding 19-inch wheels, an even more aggressive body kit with black styling elements and Audi Beam (an Audi logo that projects onto the floor as you exit your car).

Options

Audi has long been known to offer a wide variety of options for its cars, and buyers can also specify options grouped into packs. The Technology Pack brings an upgraded SONOS premium sound system, adaptive cruise control, head-up display, and a reversing camera. Go for the Technology Pack Pro and you get lane-change assist with an exit warning to stop passengers walking out into moving traffic, LED matrix headlights, a panoramic glass sunroof, power-adjustable front seats and side mirrors with a memory function and other additions. The Storage Pack brings useful extra storage nets and compartments around the cabin, and you can add a space-saver spare wheel for £150, and a tow bar for around £800.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Which Is Best?

Cheapest

  • Name
    30 TFSI Technik 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £25,140

Most Economical

  • Name
    40 TFSI e Sport 5dr S Tronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £35,570

Fastest

  • Name
    S3 TFSI Black Edition Quattro 5dr S Tronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £44,445

Charlie writes and edits news, review and advice articles for Carbuyer, as well as publishing content to its social media platforms. He has also been a regular contributor to its sister titles Auto Express, DrivingElectric and evo. As well as being consumed by everything automotive, Charlie is a speaker of five languages and once lived in Chile, Siberia and the Czech Republic, returning to the UK to write about his life-long passion: cars.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Audi A3 Sportback review – the original premium hatchback
Audi A3 Carbuyer front quarter driving
In-depth reviews
22 Apr 2024

Audi A3 Sportback review – the original premium hatchback

Top 10 best diesel cars
The best diesel cars
Best cars
14 Jul 2023

Top 10 best diesel cars

Most Popular

New MINI John Cooper Works first look! Petrol and electric hot hatch coming this year
MINI John Cooper Works camo front quarter
News
20 May 2024

New MINI John Cooper Works first look! Petrol and electric hot hatch coming this year

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers
Carbuyer best new car deals hero
Deals
24 May 2024

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers

Speed awareness course: what to expect and who’s eligible?
Police car - open boot
Tips and advice
17 May 2024

Speed awareness course: what to expect and who’s eligible?

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
26 Mar 2024

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Public EV charge point
Tips and advice
11 Jan 2023

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
21 Mar 2024

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors

Top 10 best electric cars 2024
Best electric cars
Best cars
16 May 2024

Top 10 best electric cars 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024
The best cheap-to-run cars 2023
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024
Fastest hot hatchbacks hero
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024