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Used Audi A3 Review

07 May 2024

If you’re looking for used Audi cars, in particular a used Audi A3, then the good news is you should have plenty of choice. As the best-selling Audi model in recent years and one of the most common sights on the UK’s roads, there’s a ready supply of used Audi A3s ready to be snapped up.

And with everything from MK4 A3s that are less than a couple of years old, to MK1 and MK2 models with a few more miles on the clock, you’re sure to find something to suit your budget.

The Audi A3 hatchback, saloon, Sportback, and convertible all combine style, comfort and practicality with excellent performance levels, making them a great choice for couples and young families. But is the Audi A3 the right choice for you?

Pros and Cons


  • Comfortable and fun to drive
  • Excellent interior quality
  • A good range of efficient engines


  • Expensive compared to rivals
  • Low spec versions feel dated
  • The hatchback is not as practical as some of its rivals

How does it look?

It’s not often that you can describe a family hatchback as desirable, but the Audi A3 is just that. Although not much has changed over the years, a major facelift in 2016 introduced new headlights, tail lights, a bigger grille area, different styles of alloy wheel, and some new engine updates. But even the early models feature sleek, understated styling that keeps them contemporary and retains their upmarket appeal.

What’s it like to drive?

The mk1 and mk2 Audi A3s were perfectly fine to drive, but they lacked the responsiveness and excitement of the more recent models. The mk3 and current mk4 A3s are lighter, change direction more nimbly, deliver a better ride due to the softer suspension, and provide plenty of power. That supreme agility along with buckets of grip make the A3 one of the best cars in its class to drive.

Importantly, the visibility is great as well, making parking a breeze. 

Which is the best Audi A3 to buy?

The most common used Audi A3 for sale is the mk3, which sold from 2013 to 2020. It’s a cracking car and has the awards to show it, winning the What Car? Car of the Year in 2013 and the Used Car of the Year award in 2020. The mk3 is particularly good because it combines the reliability and practicality of its predecessors with post-facelift good looks, comfort, and a tremendous driving experience.

In terms of the specs, early A3s were available in SE, Sport, and S line trim models. The 2016 facelift changed that to the SE, SE Technik Sport, and S line. There are plenty of engines to choose from, with 1.2, 1.4, 1.8, and 2.0-liter petrol varieties along with 1.6 and 2.0-liter diesel engines. Later on, the 1.2 and 1.4 petrol models were replaced by 1.0 and 1.5-liter engines respectively. There’s also the plug-in hybrid A3 e-tron Sportback, which supplements a 1.4-liter petrol engine with electric power for added fuel economy. If you’re prepared to pay a premium, the sporty 296 bhp 2.0-litre S3 is great fun and the firebreathing 394 bhp 2.5-litre RS3 could probably give you a hernia.   

Most used Audi A3 buyers tend to go for one of the smaller-engined petrol models. Turbocharging makes both the 1.2 and 1.4-liter engines nippy enough, with the latter delivering a very respectable 123bhp. 

When it comes to the body type, you have the choice of the three-door A3 hatchback, the five-door A3 Sportback, and the four-door A3 saloon. The hatchback is great if you want a sportier look and don’t need the practicality of the other body types. The Sportback provides more space for passengers and your luggage, great for growing families. The saloon sits somewhere in between, offering more space than the hatchback but without the boot space of the Sportback.  

Are you on the look out for a used Audi A3? Take a look at Tangelo's current used Audi A3 stock and get in touch with our friendly and knowledgeable sales team to book an appointment or a test drive at our Exeter Customer Hub.

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