In Europe you can get a Golf with the 1.8T plus synchro(haldex) vs. a A3 1.8T with Quattro(haldex). I am pretty sure the Audi is quite a bit more, so why would you buy it?
With VW quality in par with Audi, at least in the US, it would be hard for me to justify buying it over the VW. Same engine, same drivetrain,...This is not a attack on all you Audi A3 owners I am just wondering. Is the Audi tuned differently then the VW. I own a A4 1.8T FWD and you could argue the Passat is the same. For me I felt the Audi was more sporty because of its smaller size and the suspension seems tuned differently.
Any comments from European A3 drivers? Any US people want to comment?
11-17-1999, 09:37 AM
I would say the interior detail is what makes it worth the higher price. As well as the styling.
11-17-1999, 09:56 AM
These are the ones that come to mind now:
Quality, VW has improved a lot, but it is not on par to Audi yet.
Sport seats, although the GTI also also has sports sets, the ones in the A3 are definitively superior, firmer, better built, and better looking, while the golf's seem just an updated version of the ones used in the Jetta and are too cushy. Also, the leather used by Audi is far above VW's.
Don't know if there are really tuning differences, but te Audi really feels quicker and more sporty, perhaps it has different gear ratios?
The suspension is sporty on the A3, the golf's is too smooth, reminds me of my mom's minivan.
Better stereo, even comparing the base concert radio, the golf is far behind.
Red dashboard ilumination looks better and is easier to read that the violet-blue used by VW.
The wheels that come with the golf are downright ugly, and I bet heavy also. The tires are goodyear all-seasons in the golf, while the A3 comes with performance tires.
Noise insulation is way better in the A3, nearly on par to the A4.
I think that should make up for the US$6000 price gap.
00 1.8T FWD
11-17-1999, 11:50 PM
I agree on the seats, interior and looks.
Also Golf is heavier, about 50kg which roughly equal 100 pounds. I think this is the main reason A3 feels quicker and is quicker.
My point is A3 is different depending on location. Here in Finland A3 1.8T Ambition comes with 195/65/15 tires with no stereo. Only crappy front door speakers are there. Leather is an option (very expensive).
The seats may very well be different somewhere.
A3 1.8T Ambition Wett 1.0 K&N
11-18-1999, 06:59 AM
I only recently got my A3 1.8T, and I spent about six months making the decision!
I read lots of car magazines in the UK, mainly Top Gear, CAR, Autocar and Autoexpress.
When the new Golf GTi was due to hit the UK, it was obviously compared with its cousin the A3 1.8T. I read lots of road tests, and in terms of performance and handling the A3 came tops every time.
The main differences between the two cars is most definitely weight: A3 = 1145kg, Golf = 1270kg (Whatcar UK). Thus the official 0-60mph for the two cars is the following: A3 = 8.1s, Golf = 8.5s.
Not much in it is there? But we all know both cars are probably quicker. Certainly my stock A3 1.8T is. In the UK the price difference is around £2000.
So for an extra 2000 grand you get a better badge, better handling, better performance, and in my opinion (and others) a nicer looking car.
Whether that cost is justified, is up to the individual. I opted for the A3 because I wanted an Audi, and I knew that the Golf would become a very common (sorry, popular) car and you'd see lots of them around in a couple of months. And lets face it, you can hardly tell the difference between a Golf GTi and a Golf 1.6. :)
99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver\Blue Onyx Cloth
11-19-1999, 02:11 PM
It doesn't sound like it from your story ... I would bet you could easily kit up the Golf to the standards of an A3 and save on insurance.
As the famous movie bandit says, We don't need no stinkin' badges!
11-22-1999, 03:04 AM
Yes you probably could kit up the Golf to the same spec as the A3, and it would probably still be cheaper than the A3. If cost is the issue, then a kitted up Golf would be the obvious choice. Not sure if the insurance would be more or less though?
I unfortunately was unable to drive a Golf GTi 1.8T. No VW dealer could get hold of one when I was selecting my car. You could buy one, but they didn't have any available for a test drive. Audi on the other hand said "right, when do you want the A3?". This had a big effect on my decision.
As for differences between the two cars...As a consumer you can only go of the paper spec's and what you read - if you can't arrange a side-by-side comparison yourself.
Whether a "normal" driver like myself would be able to tell the difference in handling and performance between two cars so very similar, is another question.
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver\Blue Onyx Cloth
11-28-1999, 10:15 AM
I agree. I drive a 90HP TDi, and when I bought my A3, the new Golf wasn't out yet. So I compared to the previous Golf model and I noticed that 'upgrading' the VW to Audi standard (alu wheels, ABS,...) would make it more expensive than the A3.
Later on I compared to the new Golf, and of course the Golf was cheaper, but when I visited my dealer and sat in a Golf, I immediatly knew why. The interior looks and feel a lot cheaper.
11-28-1999, 09:53 PM
Although we don't have the A3 here in the US, we have the A4 and the Passat. I drove a new Passat and a used Audi, which was cheaper, and SO much better. It had the v6, altho the 12v, still kicked a lot of ass over the VW. The Audi handled better, and had EVERY option, almost, butdoes have heated leather seats, stickshift, roof, ski sock, quattro, did i mention that this car is the finest car ever produced on this planet, without exception? Oh yeah, baby, that's right, I'm the cat's ass alright. Did I mention that I bought the Audi?
The Audi handles better, and altho superficial, the status thing is nice. Pickup trucks cut me off more, but I can drive circles around them, literally, and in the snow as well.
11-28-1999, 10:01 PM
I'd go for the A3 over the Golf for the following reasons.
1) Better handling. Here in the US the Golf sucks big moose dick. Handling makes the car safer. Making the car safer keeps you alive. Staying alive allows you make love to the womens.
2) Better Brand. Sure, its superficial, but the car looks better both inside and out. Who would you rather drive to work with every godforsaken morning, Margaret Thatcher or Posh Spice? Danny DeVito or Mel Gibson? A skanky piece of **** or a freshly baked cinnamon roll? Whoah, this metaphor is out of control!
3) Better Quality. Here in the US, VWs are made in in Mexico. Mexicans work hard, but can they compare to old Fritz and Helmut over in Germany? Nolo Contendre, muy amigo.
11-29-1999, 06:41 AM
VW North America does not offer any all wheel drive versions of its cars. I appreciate all wheel drive and hoped Audi would bring the A3 to N America with Quattro since all of Audi's other products are available with quattro.
I have asked VW of N America to actually utilize their so called "synchro" on all of there lines form the Golf through the Passat but to no avail.
12-01-1999, 10:49 PM
All US bound Golfs and Gtis are currently made in Wolfsburg, Germany.
01-02-2004, 10:01 AM
Good God ya-all!! What about the looks? If you see a beautiful girl, "a 10", & then next to her is her sister, but her sister is only a 6, would you go for the 10 or the less attractive sister?
I know we love that their all pink inside :) ...but 4sure out side appearance of the A3 looks 1000 times better to me than the Golf V. The Interior on Audi also does look & feel more expensive. If I'm paying $23 grand anyways, what's the big deal to pay $29 grand for a 10!
Every time I see an Audi on the road it's so beautiful... the most beautiful cars I've ever seen! I will gladly pay more for an A3 over the Golf, but PLEASE OFFER THE TDI 2.0 or 1.9 to North America though!