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Ringo64

RSS First Drive: 2013 Audi A3

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Filed under: Hatchback, Audi, First Drives, LuxuryAn Old Vanguard Gets Ready For a New War

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In 1996, the first Audi A3 essentially established the premium compact segment, but that distinction really only carried significance in Europe. Gradually, and especially in its two most recent generations, its corporate sibling, the Volkswagen Golf, has become something of a true premium hatch without the badge, leaving more and more people to wonder if there was a point to splurging for the costlier Audi. Then the new Mini Cooper came along to effectively steal the thunder in the new century's compact premium market. In the past few years, Audi's A3 lineup has been scrambling around in search of redefinition. It has continued selling in alright numbers in Europe (and it currently accounts for 20 percent of annual Audi sales worldwide), but officials acknowledge the car could do much better elsewhere.

The first two generations of the A3 - 1996 and then 2003 - were only offered in hatchback form. But now that Audi has its sights on expanding the range's appeal globally, when the U.S. begins taking delivery of the third generation in the autumn of 2013, there will be a new sedan bodystyle to accompany the five-door Sportback. That means a new A3 is still over a year away for us, but we couldn't wait to drive it, so we headed to the hatchback-loving Spanish island of Mallorca to sample it for you.

Continue reading 2013 Audi A3

2013 Audi A3 originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 31 May 2012 11:57:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.<h6 style="clear: both; padding: 8px 0 0 0; height: 2px; font-size: 1px; border: 0; margin: 0; padding: 0;"></h6>Permalink | Email this | Comments

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