As always with Audi, no big aesthetic revolution at first glance for this new generation of A3 Sportback. On the other hand, the brand with the rings is reviewing everything inside and taking the opportunity to take care of the chassis to improve both comfort and efficiency.
After the success of previous generations and more than 5 million units sold, it is the turn of the fourth generation of Audi A3 to prove itself. We can see it immediately nonetheless, out of the question of risking disturbing the clientele in terms of their look.
Good to know: anticipate the purchase and resale.
It is possible to know the resale or trade-in value of your vehicle thanks to the auto Turbo rating of your Audi A3, the alternative to the Argus rating.
A less consensual style
The Ingolstadt builder gently evolves the style. At the front in any case, we especially notice that the look becomes a little sharper with the Matrix lights. But on closer inspection, we see that the vertical dimensions of the grille (now honeycomb) have been revised downwards, to a look that is both more aggressive and modern. It’s quite successful.
The design changes the most laterally, with more hollowed-out sides in the lower part which accentuate the dynamic look. The shoulders are thus more marked. The profile of the A3 becomes less straight, more sporty. An effect also accentuated by the more inclined rear pillar.
With 4.34 m in length, the new A3 Sportback thus stretches a little more than 3 cm. Same observation in width with 1.82 m wide. And in both cases it shows. The rear finally, also gains in character with refined fires.
A more practical reorganization
Despite its slightly increasing dimensions, the space on board does not change. Logical since this new A3 operates the same platform as its predecessor. Moreover, the trunk capacity does not move with a variable volume of 380 to 1,200 liters.
In terms of atmosphere, however, we have completely changed the universe compared to the previous generation with a new dashboard completely redesigned. The most visible is undoubtedly the grafting of air vents on either side of the instrumentation unit (the virtual cockpit available in 10.25 and 12.3 inches), a bit in the spirit of certain Japanese models where the instrumentation unit is integral with the steering wheel. A set not really very elegant in photo but which ultimately does not shock the least in the world once behind the wheel.
This also allows the multimedia display (10.1 inch) to be swapped out. This no longer extracts from the top of the dashboard, but is now integrated into the hand, in the heart of the center console. The touch screen becomes more accessible, and we do not take our eyes off the road thanks to the navigation also visible in the virtual cockpit located just behind the steering wheel. Note also that the air vent on the passenger side becomes horizontal, like some models in the upper segment.
Finally, the gear lever is more compact and the volume control button is now tactile (see photos). Overall, the furniture loses linearity but gains in modernity and originality. We are witnessing a small aesthetic upgrade, accompanied by a technological update with the adoption in particular of a head-up display and the Car-to-X driving assistance system, capable of communicating with infrastructure and other users.
Hybrids to come
The new A3 Sportback will be launched with three four-cylinder engines: one petrol (1.5 TFSI with 150 hp) and two Diesel (2.0 TDI with 116 and 150 hp). This offer will be supported subsequently by a 3-cylinder petrol 1.0 TFSI 110 hp.
Like her cousin the VW Golf 8, it will also benefit from a 1.5 TFSI of 150 ch with a light hybridization 48 volts. But also two plug-in hybrid versions. Some TDI and TFSI will have the quattro transmission. Gasoline engines represent almost 50% of sales on the Audi A3. We therefore opted for the strong 35 TFSI version of the block 1.5 liter of 150 hp.
What changes when driving
The weight of the new A3 does not change: 1,355 kg empty with the 1.5 TFSI block. Which is relatively light for the segment. But with this new generation of A3, Audi announces a better driving experience, thanks to superior performance, greater efficiency and increased comfort.
In practice, the efficiency of the front axle is indeed there. There is grip, even on slippery Spanish roads. But performance is nothing exceptional: 8.4 s at 0 to 100 km / h for our test model. Barely sufficient. Let’s say they are rational, to be correct. On the other hand, the other claims of Audi are confirmed with the help in particular of a power steering and a controlled damping revised.
Audi A3 Sportback, ambitious 4th generation – TURBO test on 01/10/2021
Indeed, the new Audi A3 receives as an option now progressive power steering, which will adapt according to the speed. Convenient for maneuvering in town. But not only: you turn the steering wheel less and driving is more dynamic on winding roads. In this case, good news: no artificial feeling, the management remains pleasant by being perfectly informative. And we benefit from excellent driving precision thanks to sufficient consistency.
The other chassis evolution therefore concerns the controlled damping. Exit the Magnetic Ride system, Audi returns to a traditional technology with hydraulic suspensions. Concretely, there is a greater amplitude between Comfort mode and Sport mode. This mainly benefits the Comfort mode which offers better softness than before, without penalizing the body support. Sport mode meanwhile does not fall into caricature. It changes little and so much the better.
On the price side, the A3 is a little more expensive than its competitors, but this is explained by its more generous standard equipment endowment. There is also a small inflation: prices start from 29,200 euros in 35 TFSI and 30 TDI. Or respectively 800 and 300 euros more than the previous generation. But the arrival of the small 3-cylinder in the range will make this A3 more accessible with an estimated price of around 27,000 euros.
Technical characteristics Audi A3 Sportback (2020)
|Model tested: Audi A3 Sportback 35 TFSI|
|Dimensions L x W x H||4.343 / 1.816 / 1.449 m|
|Min / max trunk volume||380 / 1,200 l|
|Unloaded weight||1.355 kg|
|Engine displacement||4 cylinders petrol, turbo – 1.498 cm3|
|Engine power||150 hp at 5,000 rpm|
|Couple||250 Nm at 1,500 rpm|
|0 to 100 km / h||8.4 s|
|Max speed||224 km / h|
|Consumption announced||5.1 l / 100 km (WLTP mixed course)|
|CO2 rate (WLTP)||116 g / km|
|Malus 2020||0 €|
|Price of the model tested||from 29.200 euros|
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