New for 2016
For 2016, the Audi A3 adds a rear-view camera and parking sensors, along with aluminum-look interior trim and heated mirror, to its list of standard features.
So Much to Admire
If you're looking for a great entry point into the Audi family then look no further than the 2016 A3. Introduced last year, the A3 offers a unique combination of luxury and advanced features. What's more, the latest A3 starts at around $30,900* and is appointed with all the authentic luxury and performance you would expect from its bigger siblings, but with a much more attractive starting MSRP, which should appeal greatly to younger buyers.
Power and Performance
Every 2016 Audi A3 comes standard with a six-speed Audi S tronic®dual-clutch transmission, however, Audi offers buyers two different options when it comes to engine size. A 1.8-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder is standard and creates 170 horsepower and 200 pound-feet of torque, with power sent to the front wheels.
If a little more firepower under the hood is what you’re after, the available 2.0-liter turbocharged engine raises output to 220 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. For the 2.0-liter, power is sent to all four-wheels thanks to Audi’s excellent quattro® all-wheel-drive system.
In addition to more power, and in a rather bizarre but welcome twist of fate, the 2.0-liter inline four actually earns slightly better fuel economy. EPA-ratings peg the 1.8-liter at 23 city/33 highway mpg,** while the heavier all-wheel-drive 2.0-liter model earns 24 city/33 highway mpg.** When most models require buyers to make a compromise between power and efficiency, it’s nice to see the A3 allow for a different approach.
Features and Trims
The 2016 Audi A3 is a smartly designed four-door sedan (more on that later) that comes in Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige trims levels, but what truly steals the show is the sheer amount of standard equipment packed inside its alluring frame.
Naturally, the jumping off point is the Premium trim and its long list of standard equipment. Here we are treated with 17-inch wheels, bi-xenon headlights, LED taillights, Bluetooth® audio streaming, and a seven-inch Audi MM interface screen. As previously mentioned, the A3 adds a rear-view camera and parking sensors, along with aluminum-look interior trim and heated mirror, to its list of standard features. Other standard features include leather upholstery, a 10-speaker sound system with CD player, satellite and HD radio, SD card, a sunroof, and eight-way power driver seat.
The Premium Plus trim includes all the previous equipment but adds keyless ignition and entry, dual-zone climate control, an eight-way power passenger seat, and Audi connect telematics system, which includes Wi-Fi hotspot and smartphone-based apps, while the Prestige trim throws in an excellent 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system, navigation system, LED headlights, and an “S line” exterior appearance package.
For the 2016 A3, Audi’s designers never needed to reinvent the wheel, and the A3’s look is in perfect harmony with many of Audi’s other vehicles. Upon first inspection that is. Venture closer and it is clear the A3 has been penned with both passion and careful consideration. Subtle contours, sharp creases along the side, and the gentle roll of the roofline round out what is an unquestionable simple, yet elegant, exterior.
In keeping with exterior, the cabin is also intelligently designed. Everything from the instrumentation to the dash is clean, with careful consideration made to driver and passenger usability. Thankfully, though, Audi has managed to instill a degree of sportiness with rounded vents and slick infotainment screen that tucks neatly into the dash when not in use.
Every 2016 Audi A3 sedan comes equipped with a number of standard safety features designed to keep you safe. This list includes antilock brakes, traction and stability control, front knee airbags, front side airbags, and full-length side curtain airbags. Additionally, the A3 employs Audi Pre-Sense technology, which prepares the cabin in the event of a potential collision by automatically tightening seatbelts and shutting the windows.
As previously mentioned, potential buyers can add optional safety technology to supplement their 2016 A3, such as blind spot monitors, adaptive cruise control, and active lane assist.
Just because the 2016 A3 is the smallest car in Audi’s lineup doesn’t make it any less grand. Quite the opposite. If you’re in the market for an upscale and compact four-door sedan, you’ll be hard pressed to find an alternative that offers the same level of driving pleasure and refined design. And that’s before taking into account its exceptional fuel economy and plethora of tech and driver assistance technologies. In short, the 2016 A3 represents the perfect entry point into the Audi lineup, and it does so without forgoing any premium content or luxury appeal.
For more information, or to schedule a test drive, stop by DCH Audi Oxnard.
* Prices listed are the Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price for the vehicle and options you chose. These prices do not include transportation, taxes, title, other options, dealer installation costs or other dealer charges.
** All fuel economy figures are EPA estimates unless otherwise noted. your mileage will vary. See www.fueleconomgy.gov for more information.
Images: Audi of America