From £16,755
More bite, but hard to swallow cost

Our Verdict

Audi A3 hero front

Third-gen Audi A3 gets a mild facelift, more equipment, some new engines and a new hot model - but is it the cream of the premium hatch crop?

  • First Drive

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    Most frugal model in the Audi A3 range thrills with impressive economy, but it lacks dynamic sparkle
  • First Drive

    Audi A3 2.0 TDI Sport

    Our first drive of the new Audi A3 in the UK has revealed it to be a good, capable companion if slightly lacking in ambition
22 March 2005

MTM has taken a standard Audi A3 2.0T and modified the engine management to deliver a power boost from 196bhp to 244bhp and also an extra 70lb ft of torque (up to 277lb ft). As you’d expect, it feels faster, with more go anywhere in the rev range while maintaining the low-rev response for which the standard engine has been praised.

The car we drove, from MTM’s UK distributor Quattrosports, also had a Milltek stainless steel exhaust system fitted – at a cost of £289.50 plus fitting, on top of the £750 for the ECU tweaks – and the well-judged burble certainly adds to the sense of increased speed, though it doesn’t offer quite the sonic entertainment of a VW Golf GTi.

As with most modified cars, the changes don’t stop under the bonnet. For £290 Quattrosports will supply and fit a new spring set and, for £1800, 19in MTM wheels and tyres. Body roll is reduced, and grip levels are increased. The ride is noticeably firmer, but without destroying ride comfort altogether.

You can purchase all the parts and modifications as a set for £3179 supplied and fitted, and Quattrosports says the modifications won’t affect your warranty.The MTM A3 still can’t offer the entertaining drive or spirit of a Golf GTi, but these tweaks give the Audi some real bite.

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