The New 2014 Audi A3 Saloon Review [Video]
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The 2014 Audi A3 Saloon is the first saloon in the well-known A3 range and is also one of the smallest available in the executive class. It neatly caters for all those who love the Audi vibe, but can’t quite stretch to getting an A4. That being said, this A3 Saloon has virtues of its own that will make it one to consider when buying or leasing an executive style car.
Despite this being an alternative to A4 motoring, the 2014 Audi A3 Saloon is neither a dwarvish A4 clone to look at, nor simply an A3 hatch with a boot stuck on the end. No this car has been specifically developed – 11mm wider, 9mm lower and 146mm longer than the Sportback; with an ultralight construction (that leaves it 200kg lighter than a rival Mercedes CLA) and provides the underpinnings for the Cabriolet model. This car isn’t particularly showy, but it is undeniably modern and classy, with Audi’s characteristic ‘Tornado lines’ running up the side and large overhangs that give it a distinctive profile. The boot opens to reveal 425ltrs (35ltrs more than a Sportback) which is very wide and practical, extending to a vacuous 845ltrs with the rear bench folded down. The back seating area itself is actually very much like an A4 with a surprising amount of room that should see passengers from A-B in decent comfort. Moving into the front, the cabin simply can’t be touched by anything in this class. It’s pretty damn Audi as you would expect – classy, clear and high quality. An electric 5.8” MMI infotainment screen pops out of the dash to dominate the console area, having integrated as much functionality as they could fit (to limit the cabins button clutter) along with its almost endless list of connectivity options to ensure you feel like you’re on the cutting edge of modern day motoring. Altogether, it wouldn’t look or feel out of place in a car double the price of this humble compact executive saloon.
As you might expect, the 2014 Audi A3 Saloon drives pretty much like the majority of its A3 brethren, and that’s a good thing. The incredibly clever ultra-light MQB Modular Transverse Matrix underpinnings along with a plethora of other wonderful technology to assist the drive, ensure that the 2014 Audi A3 Saloon’s handling dynamics are agile and sharp around any corners, while the ride quality is good at soaking up anything the road throws at it. The suspension here is a valid thing to point out as you can choose between a firm sports setup of softer suspension as standard. The sports suspension is great for chucking it around the place, but it might get a bit tiring overall. Therefore it might well do you better to opt for the softer setup.
Engine-wise, the range begins with the entry level 105ps 1.6 TDi diesel unit (0-62mph in 10.9 seconds) but the most popular unit will undoubtedly be the 2ltr TDi diesel (0-62 in 8.4 secs/top speed 136mph). The 140ps 1.4ltr TFSi petrol engine (8.4 secs/136mph) is one to consider as it includes clever COD (cylinder on demand) technology which seamlessly shuts down cylinders you don’t need when cruising at low to mid speeds – thereby saving a considerable amount of energy. This leads to fantastic eco figures of 60mpg. That’s a fantastic blend of performance and economy. If the performance isn’t quite as sparky as you’d like, then Audi can oblige you with the 180ps TFSi (7.2 secs/150mph) which comes with the option of Quattro 4WD. At the top of the range we have the sporty 300ps 2ltr TFSi Quattro S3 Sports Saloon which reaches 62mph from standing in a supercar-like 5.1 seconds. Now that’s performance!
All in all, what’s the low down with the 2014 Audi A3 Saloon? As larger saloons evolved and steadily became more expensive over time, there became the opportunity to create a new segment beneath them. The challenge here was for this to have some sort of mass appeal rather than simply being a niche. The 2014 Audi A3 Saloon does this by offering itself up as an A4 alternative with all the delightful and classy Audi trimmings, while being more affordable and more efficient.
If you want to get hold of the new 2014 Audi A3 Saloon then don’t hesitate to leave us a message on our contact us page or give us a call on 01903 538835 to find out about our Audi lease deals.