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Expert Rating

Audi A3 Cabriolet (2014 – 2020)

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Expert Rating

Summary


The Audi A3 Cabriolet is a compact two-door convertible, derived from the third-generation A3 hatchback. This model was launched in the UK in 2014 and continued until the end of its production life in 2020. It was not replaced when Audi launched the current A3 range.

After two years on sale, the A3 Cabriolet received a mid-life facelift in 2016, consisting of cosmetic updates and new on-board tech additions. Throughout its lifespan the Cabriolet was available with a selection of petrol and diesel engines, and with either a six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic gearbox. The top-spec model was the S3 Cabriolet.

“At times, the automatic gearbox shifted gears with a noticeable lurch”, What Car? explained, recommending that customers opt for the smoother manual transmission instead. Many motoring outlets mentioned the same problem, while others took issue with the rather loud tyre and wind noise with the soft-top fabric roof closed. Many reviewers also warned potential buyers of the A3 Cabriolet’s steep pricing, as optional extras could easily take the price past £40,000.

That said, the Audi A3 Cabriolet had a very positive media reception during its life cycle, predominantly thanks to its “classy interior, good driving manners and a useful amount of (storage) space”, The Telegraph explained. While practicality was not the A3 Cabriolet’s speciality, it did come with a larger boot than the previous model – totalling 320-litres of boot space.

Impressed by the convertible’s exterior styling, Car commented that the A3 Cabriolet was a far more elegant proposition than its “slightly humpbacked” predecessor, while Autocar concluded that this well-executed compact soft-top package is only made more appealing by the “excellent range of engines” available, which provide stronger performance and fuel economy than the previous A3 Cabriolet model.

Despite the performance upgrade, Car described the Cabriolet as “easygoing-if-not-spectacular drive”, while What Car? recommended booking a test drive of the BMW 2 Series Convertible or Audi TT roadster instead if you are looking for a more engaging model on the road.

No longer in production, the Audi A3 Cabriolet holds an Expert Rating of 73%, based on 28 reviews published by UK media sources.

A3 highlights

  • Comfortable and refined cabin
  • Efficient range of engines
  • Attractive exterior styling
  • Plenty of on-board tech as standard

A3 lowlights

  • Strong brand image inflates used model price
  • Rivals offer more value-for-money
  • Reliability of the automatic gearbox is questionable
  • Larger alloys mean a firmer ride

Key specifications


Body style: Four-seat convertible
Engines: petrol, diesel
Price when new: From £26,370

Launched: Spring 2014
Ended production: Spring 2020


Media reviews


Reviews, road test and comparisons from across the UK automotive media. Click any of the boxes to view.

The Car Expert

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Auto Express

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Auto Trader

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Autocar

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Business Car

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Car

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Car Keys

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Carbuyer

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Carwow

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Daily Mirror

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Evo

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Green Car Guide

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Heycar

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Honest John

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Parkers

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The Sunday Times

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The Telegraph

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What Car?

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Which?

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Safety rating


Independent crash test and safety ratings from Euro NCAP

No safety rating

The Audi A3 Cabriolet was not crash tested by Euro NCAP. The hatchback version of the A3 was tested in 2012 and awarded a five-star rating, but this does not apply to the Cabriolet version due to the significant structural changes resulting from removing the roof.

Eco rating


Independent economy and emissions ratings from Green NCAP

No eco rating

The Audi A3 Cabriolet was not lab tested by Green NCAP during its production life.

Awards


Trophies, prizes and awards that the Audi A3 has received

2019

  • What Car? Awards – Best Convertible, £25K – £50K
  • What Car? Used Car Awards – Best Used Convertible

2017

  • What Car? Awards – Best Convertible, £25K – £35K

2016

  • Carbuyer Awards – Best Convertible

2015

  • Auto Express Awards – Best Convertible
  • Carbuyer Awards – Best Convertible

2014

  • Auto Express Awards – Best Convertible
  • Scottish Car of the Year Awards – Best Drop-Top
  • What Car? AwardsBest Open-Top Car

Similar cars


If you’re looking at the Audi A3 Cabriolet, you might also be interested in these alternatives

Abarth 124 Spider | Audi TT Roadster | BMW 2 Series Convertible | Fiat 124 Spider |  Range Rover Evoque Convertible | Mazda MX-5 | Mercedes-Benz SLC | Mini Convertible | Volkswagen Eos | Volkswagen Golf Cabriolet | Volkswagen T-Roc Cabriolet

Buy a Audi A3 Cabriolet


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Best car rankings

Want to see how this car ranks against its rivals?

The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites

Audi A3 Cabriolet (2014 – 2020)The Audi A3 Cabriolet (2014 - 2020) was praised for its performance and cabin quality, although the clunky automatic gearbox was a letdown.