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Audi's littlest hatchback combines a sporty nature with a practical body style.
The front of the car has a burly, aggressive look, and a grille that extends beneath the bumper.
The car carries four adults comfortably, and has ample rear cargo space. The S Line Sport Package includes the 17 inch alloy wheels.
To better integrate the look, Audi designers extend the tail lights from the rear fenders onto the hatch.
Cargo space is versatile in the A3, with a pass-through for skis or other long items, and a removable cover.
Fit and finish is very good in the A3 cabin. The switchgear all has a feeling of quality, as well.
Audi's multimedia interface uses a click-knob surrounded by four buttons, which can control all the car functions that appear on the LCD.
Route guidance on Audi's navigation system is good, using a split screen to list streets.
When there is an upcoming turn on the route, the LCD shows a graphic of what that turn looks like.
Audi is the only car company to have SD card slots in its entertainment system. They are cleverly hidden behind the LCD.
The LCD shows the MP3 tracks on the SD card, but the system doesn't let you easily navigate folders.
Audi's music controller uses a rotary dial to let you play, pause, and skip tracks.
The telephone dialer works okay, but is a little tedious to use. Fortunately, the system also accepts voice commands.
Paddle shifters are mounted on the spokes of the steering wheel. They control the Direct Shift Gearbox.
Handling is very good in the A3. It may lose traction under acceleration, but it holds the road in the turns.
The display between the speedometer and tachometer shows a variety of useful information. And while manually shifting, you'll need to pay attention to the tachometer.
Although it does have a bit of turbo lag, Audi's direct injection engine is very efficient, getting 26.1mpg in our testing.