The least costly Audi A3s, the Attraction models, have the equipment in all A3s and either a 1.4 TFSI petrol engine or the 1.6 TDI diesel. Spend more for an A3 Ambition and you can choose from more powerful 1.8 TFSI petrol and 2.0 TDI diesel engines.
A3 Ambitions also have front foglights, and cosmetic upgrades such as aluminium trim on the windows and aluminium-look elements inside. There is a more sculpted sports steering wheel, and sports front seats that provide greater lateral support.
Ambition models also have wheels an inch bigger in diameter at 17 inches. These are fitted with wider tyres with smaller sidewalls, which slightly increase grip and steering response. And Ambitions have Audi’s drive select system. This lets you adjust how the steering, engine and gearbox respond to you: very immediately, for sporty driving, or more lazily for touring or city use.
Ambition quattro A3s are upgraded from front-wheel-drive to all-wheel-drive, which adds security in poor conditions and improves handling.
Spend more again for an A3 Sportback e-tron and you get the petrol-electric plug-in hybrid engine, and subsidised installation of an Audi fast-charger in your garage. You also get a bigger, 7.0-inch touchscreen, satellite navigation, and a park assist system that can steer the car into a parking spot. Extremely long-lived LED headlamps show the way at night, and a convenience key allows you to unlock the car with the key still safe in a pocket or bag. The e-tron’s other features match the A3 Ambition’s.
For about the same price as the Sportback e-tron you could have an Audi S3. This is the high-performance A3, available in sedan and Sportback form. It has a much more powerful 2.0-litre turbo engine, quattro all-wheel-drive, firmer suspension, and 18-inch wheels.
For equipment, the S3 matches the e-tron, except that its headlamps are extremely bright Xenon types rather than LEDs. The S3 also has a flat-bottomed sports steering wheel, and power-adjusted, heated sports front seats.
Attraction and Ambition versions of the A3 can be optioned-up to give them some of the equipment found in the e-tron and S3, including park-assist, power-adjustable front seats, and keyless entry. These items come bundled in option packs.
S3 versions can be upgraded further with an S Performance package, which adds adaptive dampers, LED headlights, a Bang and Olufsen brand audio system, and S Sport front seats that provide more side-support.