in 2010 Upscale Small Cars

Avg. Price Paid: $15,645 - $19,174
Original MSRP: $27,270 - $30,850
MPG: 21 City / 30 Hwy
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Used Car: 2010 Audi A3 Review

Review Last Updated: 7/30/12

The 2010 Audi A3 combines top-notch performance with a quality interior and plenty of cargo space. While its reliability rating trails much of the competition, the A3 offers outstanding safety ratings and available all-wheel drive.

For the 2010 model year, Audi added a turbodiesel four-cylinder engine, which has high fuel economy ratings of 30/42 mpg city/highway, to the A3’s options list. If you want more power, the A3’s base turbocharged 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine generates 60 more horsepower than the diesel model. Fuel economy ratings are lower with the gas engine, but they’re still good for the class. Additionally, all-wheel drive is available with the gas engine, while the diesel engine is available only with front-wheel drive.

With an attractive and well-made interior, the A3 upholds Audi’s reputation for posh cabins, but there are some downsides. Like many 2010 small cars, the rear row is cramped, but some reviewers also said that the controls become confusing with the navigation system. The A3 does, however, have 19.5 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats in use, which is great for the class, and that number doubles when the seats are folded. The A3 comes with leather seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, satellite radio and a 10-speaker stereo with a CD player. Bluetooth, a Bose stereo and navigation were optional when it was new. 

As a used car, one of the 2010 Audi A3’s biggest weaknesses is a reliability score that’s low for the class. However, with unbeatable safety ratings, great performance and upscale cabin, the A3 has a lot of appeal.

See the full 2010 Audi A3 specs »

Other Cars to Consider

The 2010 Volvo C30 hatchback stands out with its retro glass tailgate, but it also has excellent safety ratings. The C30 only seats four and doesn’t have as much cargo space as the A3. However, the Volvo offers plenty of interior features and a higher reliability score.

If you prefer a sedan over a hatchback, consider the 2010 Acura TSX. There’s no diesel engine available, but you can get a V6, which reviewers said makes the TSX particularly fun to drive. Inside, the TSX comes with a lot of standard features, and it offers good cargo space. It also comes with high reliability and safety scores.

Compare the A3 to the C30 and TSX »