What is it?
The Audi A3 Cabriolet feels like it’s been with us for ages, however the guillotined version of Audi’s bestselling A3 hatchback only arrived on these shores in 2008 and was the headline act of the second-generation’s mid-life facelift.
At the time the all-new A3 Cabriolet ticked all the boxes for badge-hungry, fashion-conscious socialites, despite having more than a passing resemblance to a Victorian pram. Skip forward a generation and it's time for the third-generation A3 to go under the knife for its mid-life nip and tuck, and the Cabriolet with it.
The third-generation Cabriolet is a rather grown-up, elegant and sophisticated two-door drop-top and this mid-life facelift only builds on what has gone before. You should be able to pick out the facelifted model easily enough as the front and rear lights are redesigned, including a revised daytime running light design. The bumpers are new, as is the front grille, and there are new alloy wheels available.
There’s one new engine added to the line-up of six: a new 2.0 TSFI petrol. A 1.4-litre and the 2.0-litre in the S3 complete the petrol line-up, while you can choose a 1.6 TDI or from two variants of the 2.0 TDI if you want a diesel. Lesser-powered engines are front wheel drive and fitted with a six-speed manual gearbox, although you can opt for quattro all-wheel drive and S Tronic dual-clutch automatic transmission.
All trims get additional standard kit including Xenon headlights, cruise control, automatic rain sensors and headlights and Smartphone interface. LED headlights with dynamic 'sweeping' indicatiors (standard on the S line and S3) and Audi’s Virtual Cockpit are available for the first time. You can also now opt for more security features than before, including traffic jam assist, emergency assist, adaptive cruise control and rear cross-traffic assist.
We tested the 1.4 TFSI fitted with a seven-speed S tronic gearbox in S Line trim. Our test model wore more than £8000 worth of optional equipment, including 19in alloys wheel, adaptive cruise control, technology pack, progressive steering, Audi magnetic ride, heated seats and a B&O sound system, which leaves this car chiming the till at more than £40,000.