01-30-2000, 03:22 AM
I am considering purchasing an A3 Turbo. I have test driven one and really enjoyed it. My only difficulty with the car is the price. $52K(Australian Dollars).
Is the car worth the premium on the Golf as they look pretty similar in terms of build quality. The Golf GTI ( 1.8Turbo in Aust configuration ) is quite a bit cheaper here and is better equipped.
The Audi dealer told me some line about the A3 being better built than the Golf but I couldn't pick the quality difference myself.
Am I being charged extra for the badge or is the extra money worth my while.
Any advice would be appreciated as cars are very expensive ( at least European makes ) over here.
Derek - Canberra ACT
It's really a tough one..
I have driven both cars and bought an A3 1.8T because I felt it had a better suspension set up, it's handling had more precision, the gearshift was less rubbery and the interior quality was one notch above Golf. I think that A3 benefits from certain technological and design features inherited from its older brothers A4, A8 etc all of which were released before A3.
In my view A3 has timeless sporty design while Golf is nice for the time being. A3 is a relatively rare appearance while everone seems to drive Golf IV nowadays.
I was in the market for Golf GTI beacuse I felt it was a very good package for money. But A3 1.8T is worth the extra few bucks.
Having said all this, if you're thinking about 4-doors than I think Golf GTI looks better, I hate A3 4-door version for some reason.
This question has been asked before. And is difficult to answer. It really is all about branding and marketing...and saving money by having single platforms used for "different" cars. Another example is S3 and TT, S3 is de-tuned so that the TT can be the more sought after car. However....
It is my understanding the A3 does have a stiffer suspension setup, and is a slightly lighter car. It is also true that you see more Golf IV's around than A3 1.8T's.
I picked the A3 because I think it looks nicer, had better performance (official figures) on paper than the Golf, plus its rarer, and of course the badge.
However, build quality, I'd have to disagree on that one. Basically, because of the problems I have with my rattling interior panels and dash. But you can't judge the many by looking at the few.
But the A3 is a good car. If it wasn't for the interior I have got, I'd be going wild about it.
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver
01-31-2000, 05:48 AM
I also agree with the other comments.In the UK the Audis maintain their prices even better than Golfs. My A3 is certainly well built but it isn't quite as good as the A4.
There is also the badge issue ! I owned Vws until 16 years ago .
I do think the Passat is really well built but I have no knowledge of the Golf 4 . Golf 4 are very common around my area ( Berkshire ) A3s are much less common .Many people often want 4 doors , 4 door A3s look too cluttered and are only just becoming available.
In the end it comes down to personal preferences and my wife drives my A3 but I am not so sure she would drive a Golf ! I suppose that makes us Audi snobs--sorry !
01-31-2000, 12:13 PM
My best advice would be to arrage extended test drives of at least a few hours without the salesman. It would give to time to drive your own routes, at your own speeds without having to be distracted by the salesman. Most dealers, if given a little notice, can arrange this and if not, you must question the long term prospects of such a dealer if you do decide to buy the car.
Also, have you posted a similar question onto one of the VW forums? It would be very interesting to hear comments from VW owners.
My own experience was that the A3 was a little faster, more sporty i.e. steering, suspension, had a MUCH better stereo (if that is important) and has an overall better image. I drove the Golf (1.8T GTI) and thought "nice car, quiet, fast etc" but drove the A3 1.8T and thought "i want one!"
Maybe my experience of the Golf was a little slanted as it did not live up to expectations having owned a MkII.
Anyway, hope our opinions help.
2000 A3 1.8T Silver