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Avg. Price Paid:$10,959 - $16,094
Original MSRP: $25,930 - $34,915
MPG: 21 City / 29 Hwy
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2008 Audi A3 Interior

This interior review was written when the 2008 Audi A3 was new.

Although the 2008 A3 is the entry-level compact in Audi's line of vehicles, its in keeping with Audi's reputation for a quality fit and finish. Automobile Magazine notes that the "cabin boasts typically fine quality, peerless ergonomics, and an excellent mix of A6, TT, and A4 design elements."

Other reviewers note subtlety in the A3's design. The Boston Globe says: "The car oozes a sense of stealth. It uses more plastic and rubber than in the typical Audi interior, but doesn't feel cheap." Similarly, the Detroit News says the design is "nothing that hits you over the head, but if you study the A3's interior, much as you would a fine painting in a museum, you come to appreciate the subtleties."

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Seating

Most reviewers say the seating in the 2008 Audi A3 is comfortable and supportive for all five passengers. The Boston Globe notes: "A tall and lanky pilot friend of mine was considering an A4 recently when he spotted the A3 parked in my yard. He loved it, but thought it might be too small. But he found that the front seat accommodated his 6-foot-4-inch frame. He sat in the back seat and reached the same conclusion." Kelley Blue Book also concludes that the seats "offer good support," later noting, "Rear-seat passengers are treated to better accommodations than one might expect in a compact car."

Other writers don't find a lot of rear seat legroom. About.com states that "if either front seat is moved all the way back, even a shortie like me won't fit back there." MSN agrees: "There's decent room for four six-footers, but legroom becomes tight behind a six-foot driver who moves his seat more than halfway back. The right passenger doesn't have a problem, although neither rear passenger has a surplus of room."

Interior Features

Reviewers say the 2008 A3 does an excellent job with its interior amenities and design. As U.S. News reviewer Rick Newman says, "Audi didn't cut corners on interior appointments or electronics." Edmunds calls the styling "classically German, with straightforward buttons and controls -- a simplicity some may find preferable to the more complicated, expensive Audis." Edmunds specifically likes that the "excellent steering wheel with its built-in S tronic shift paddles fits the driver's hands perfectly, as does the leather-topped shift knob."

Standard features for the 2008 Audi 2.0 T include keyless entry, dual-zone climate control and power windows. The optional Premium Package adds a leather-wrapped steering wheel and a four-way power lumbar driver seat, as well as an illumination package with driver and passenger reading lights and illuminated vanity mirrors. The S line package adds sports seats and aluminum interior trim. The 3.2 comes standard with almost all of those features.

Stereo and Entertainment

The Audi 2.0 T has a standard 10-speaker audio system, while the 3.2 has a Bose sound system with AutoPilot noise compensation and Sirius satellite radio. The Bose system is optional for the 2.0 T model, and all trims have a new option for an iPod Integration system that's installed in the glovebox and operated via the CD changer.

The Bose sound system is also paired with the A3's optional DVD-based navigation system, featuring a 6.25-inch display screen, five language settings and voice guidance. But you might find a more affordable option from a portable GPS manufacturer. Read our GPS reviews for information on the best-functioning portable units sold today.

Additional Features

Reviewers like MSN recommend Audi's optional Cold Weather Package, which "probably doesn't seem like a 'must-have' option in the spring, but will be appreciated in northern winters." This package includes heated front seats, a ski sack, heated windshield washer nozzles and heated exterior mirrors. Drivers also have an option for Bluetooth phone preparation with voice control, self-leveling Xenon headlights and adaptive front lighting.

Cargo

Although the A3's cargo area is small, reviewers are pleased with the amount of space provided with the rear seats folded. With a total cargo capacity of 19.5 cubic feet with the rear seats down, reviewers like Forbes note that the cargo area "fits a surprising amount of gear." U.S. News reviewer Rick Newman thinks the backseat configuration allows riders to "fold down the back seat and squeeze in a bicycle or surfboard or the makings of a home improvement project." However, impressions change when the rear seats are up. Kelley Blue Book explains that "some folks might be disappointed by the size of the rear cargo area."

Review Last Updated: 2/17/09

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