2020 Audi A3: specs, prices and more

The outgoing Audi A3 is hugely popular, so the new A3 hatchback has big shoes to fill. Good job it offers hybrid power and slick in-car tech

James Wilson
Mar 18, 2020

Audi is on the cusp of opening order books for its new A3. The upmarket family hatchback is expected to cost from just under £25,000 in the UK with deliveries likely to start in mid-2020. Initially, there will be a limited number of engines on offer, with Audi bolstering its range with more petrols, diesels and hybrids (both mild-hybrid and plug-in hybrids) in the months following.

The Audi A3 is one of the more expensive family hatchbacks but as a result traditionally offers a luxurious interior, impressive equipment (even if you have to pay through the nose to get some optional extras) and a range of engine types. That last point is really where the 2020 A3 will show its breadth of abilities, appealing to those after a sporty car and those after an easy-to-drive family car alike, depending which engine is under the bonnet.

Many of the A3’s rivals have recently been revamped – including the likes of the Mercedes A-Class and BMW 1 Series and the closely related VW Golf. What is evident from its refreshed rivals is the massive increase in onboard technology – think large screens and autonomous driving aids. The 2020 Audi A3 doesn't look likely to be left behind in either of these areas, however, and even Amazon’s Alexa is expected to feature in the near future.

Keep reading below for specs, engine details and more on the 2020 Audi A3.

2020 Audi A3 specifications and trims

Five trims, twelve colours and four wheel sizes are on offer with the 2020 Audi A3. The trims are called Technik, Sport, S Line, Edition 1 and Vorsprung.

Entry-level Technik models feature goodies such as a 10.3-inch virtual cockpit (Audi-speak for digital dials in place of a traditional speedometer and rev counter), a 10.1-inch central touchscreen media system, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility (which Audi is claiming will eventually be wireless) and 16-inch alloy wheels.

Next up is Sport trim which packs larger 17-inch alloy wheels, various aesthetic tweaks befitting the Sport name, dual-zone climate control and leather upholstery. S Line variants get bigger wheels still (at 18-inch) as well as LED front and rear lights, sports suspension, front sports seats and tinted windows.

The next rung on the specification ladder is Edition 1, which (you guessed it) comes with larger alloy wheels (19-inch). There are also matrix LED lights on offer - which provide a clear view of the road ahead without blinding oncoming traffic - Alcantara and leather electric heated front seats and Audi’s virtual cockpit plus (a mildly more flashy version of the standard digital dials).

Sitting pretty at the top of the range is Vorsprung trim, which shares the same size 19-inch wheels as Edition 1 models. Other equipment includes a panoramic roof, electric boot opening, an upgraded Bang and Olufsen (B&O) sound system, wireless phone charging (for compatible phones) and head-up display, which beams driving information onto the windscreen.

2020 Audi A3 economy and performance

UK buyers will initially have the choice of two engines – a petrol and a diesel, both of which will power the front wheels only. The petrol is a 1.5-litre turbocharged unit (badged as a TFSI) producing 148hp and paired with a manual gearbox, while the diesel is a 2.0-litre (badged as a TDI) producing 148hp and paired with an automatic 'S Tronic' gearbox.

Audi has also confirmed that a mild-hybrid A3 will be offered - which offers a small electric boost for greater fuel economy but without the large batteries of a conventional hybrid. The mild-hybrid system will consist of a 1.5-litre petrol TFSI engine which uses something called a 'belt alternator starter' to assist the engine when accelerating and setting off from a standstill. Audi is yet to confirm official performance figures for the mild-hybrid setup.

Don’t think Audi is done there, though. The German car maker has confirmed that more petrol and diesel engines will join the range, including several connected to its famous Quattro four-wheel-drive system. Furthermore, two plug-in hybrids are expected. They will likely use the same components as seen on closely-related cars such as the Volkswagen Golf GTE and Seat Leon PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) so a claimed electric-only range nearing 40 miles can be expected.

As for handling, Audi is fitting more powerful models - those with at least 148hp - with what's known as 'multi-link rear suspension' and those with less power a 'torsion beam' setup. In English that means cars with 148hp and up should offer a better balance of comfort and roadholding, but we will have to wait to test drive the 2020 Audi A3 on UK roads to confirm as much.

Finally, the 2020 A3 is set to come with a towing capacity of up to 1,600kg (braked), although Audi is yet to confirm which engines will allow for this. That's a pretty decent amount for a family hatchback, so if you want a reasonably compact car that can tow, the A3 might be a good option.

2020 Audi A3 prices and delivery dates

Order books for the new 2020 Audi A3 are expected to open shortly with first UK deliveries due in mid-2020. Prices will start at £24,900 for entry-level Technik 35 TFSI variants and raise all the way up to £43,040 for Vorsprung 35 TDI S Tronic (automatic) models. For a full breakdown of prices, see the summary table below.

Trim

Engine and Gearbox

Price

Technik

35 TFSI Manual

£24,900

35 TDI S Tronic Automatic

£28,350

Sport

35 TFSI Manual

£26,300

35 TDI S Tronic Automatic

£29,750

S Line

35 TFSI Manual

£28,200

35 TDI S Tronic Automatic

£31,650

Edition 1

35 TFSI Manual

£31,240

35 TDI S Tronic Automatic

£34,690

Vorsprung

35 TFSI Manual

£36,340

35 TDI S Tronic Automatic

£43,040

2020 Audi A3 design and technology

On top of the equipment highlighted further up, there is some safety tech that is worth a mention. As standard, all models get autonomous emergency braking (known as “pre sense front” in Audi speak) and lane departure warning.

Higher spec models (or cheaper models with the right options ticked) can benefit from adaptive cruise control, traffic sign recognition, parking assist and cameras which feed video of the surrounding area onto the media system – useful for navigating tight spaces.

Audi will introduce Amazon Alexa functionality in the middle of 2020, which will allow drivers to control smart home devices from their car – that’s right, the kettle can be put on to boil before you arrive home from work… Meanwhile, boot capacity is expected to be 380 litres with the rear seats up and 1,200 litres with them down - that's pretty big for a car this size.

As with most new cars these days there is an accompanying smartphone application available – in this case, it’s called the myAudi app. Owners can use said application to lock/unlock their car remotely and get a reminder of where they parked. On top of this, Audi’s 'connect key' is expected to be available a few weeks after launch, which will open the door (quite literally) to drivers being able to gain access and start their car using only a smartphone.

2020 Audi A3 rivals and alternatives

The Audi A3 cannot move for rivals. Whether it is in-house alternatives from Volkswagen, Skoda and Seat - which share many engines, gearboxes and other tech - or others from Mercedes, BMW, Ford, Mazda, Renault, Peugeot, Hyundai and Mini, the A3 has its work cut out.

That said, not all of its rivals are a threat for the same reason. Cars such as the VW Golf, Mercedes A-Class and BMW 1 Series all scratch that premium hatchback itch which the A3 is targetting (especially in high-spec models). Meanwhile models such as the Ford Focus and Mazda 3 are known for offering great driving experiences even if their cabins traditionally trail that of their German counterparts.

At the same time, the Peugeot 308 offers rock bottom running costs and the Renault Megane comes with comprehensive levels of equipment even in entry-level spec and when fitted with a diesel engine, should be frugal, too. In summary then, the 2020 Audi A3 does not have an easy ride ahead.

 

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