Is the 2022 Audi A3 Worth Buying?

The Audi A3 is the lowest-priced car in Audi’s lineup. Redesigned for the 2022 model year, it’s also one of the newest. With attractive styling and good driving dynamics, it certainly plays the part of an Audi. However, with other great options in the compact and entry-level luxury segment like the Genesis G70, Acura Integra, and BMW 2-Series, is the 2022 Audi A3 worth buying? 

2022 Audi A3 specs 

A dark gray Audi A3 sedan luxury car model parked on a dirt plain near a sand dune and rocks
Audi A3 sedan | AUDI AG.

The 2022 Audi A3 is equipped with Volkswagen’s 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder used in Audi’s lineup and vehicles like the VW Passat and Porsche Macan. Unlike those cars, the A3 pairs that engine with a 45-volt mild-hybrid system providing fuel economy numbers of 28 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway. That beats the old model’s ratings of 22/30 city/highway mpg.  

Where the new Audi A3 loses to the old car is performance. MotorTrend tested both generations of the A3 and found the 2015 model hit 60 mph in 5.4 seconds, reaching the 1/4 mile in 14.0 seconds. By comparison, the current car takes another full second to hit both numbers – 0 to 60 in 6.4 seconds and the 1/4 mile in 15.0 seconds. The new model is still decently quick, but like a middle-aged athlete, it’s added a few pounds and lost a step.

Highlights from MotorTrend’s test

MotorTrend’s 2022 Audi A3 test starts by asking, “is the cheapest Audi ‘Audi’ Enough?” Right off the bat, MotorTrend praises the A3, saying, “It’s sharp, updated styling looks more mature and elegant in person than in photos….” The outlet also praised the fuel economy and the seamless nature of the mild-hybrid system.

However, the reviewers did notice the lack of performance compared to the old base A3. In addition to the acceleration numbers, MotorTrend “noted a slightly dull turn-in, a lack of initial bite from the brakes, and a fair amount of body roll out at the track.” Still, the outlet praised the road manners saying, “the A3 feels planted and direct on the road, possessing the kind of high-speed stability we expect from German sedans.”

Some common drawbacks for base-level cars are smaller infotainment screens and a lack of features. The Audi A3 is no different. MotorTrend did not miss the larger Virtual Cockpit instrument cluster, indicating the 10.3-inch digital display offered plenty of information. However, it did notice the base car lacks safety features that are standard on other vehicles in this class. Audi only provides lane departure warning, automatic emergency braking, and automatic high beams. If you want adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, lane-keeping assist, and rear cross-traffic assist, you’ll need to spring for the $3,300 Premium Plus package. 

Is the 2022 Audi A3 worth buying?

MotorTrend thinks the new Audi A3 is “Audi enough,” summarizing their report with, “while there are other compelling options out there, the A3 mostly does entry-level luxury right.” 

The problem is there are other compelling options out there, many of which include Audi’s optional equipment as standard. Similar money puts you in a well-equipped 2022 Genesis G70, which offers more standard features and is also a treat to drive. Between the choice of an Audi A3 and the Genesis G70, the G70 holds more value in many areas. 

However, add the Premium Plus package, and you’ll get a different answer. $3,300 is a chunk of change but not unreasonable in the luxury segment, and it gets you a lot more car. In addition to the Virtual Cockpit and safety features, this package adds LED lighting, birch wood inlays, and a 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system. Audi makes some of the best car interiors when it wants to, and the Premium Plus package is Audi on its game.

Finally, what about the Audi S3, the upgraded version of the A3? Well, the S3 is almost a different car than the A3 and appeals to different buyers. The A3, with its mild-hybrid powertrain, is a sensible balance of fuel economy and useable performance for a much more affordable price.

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