Cars I have driven #2 – 2005 Audi A3

12 Jul

The last of my company cars, before I bought the Jaguar, was an Audi A3.

Company policy was to lease cars on a three year deal. I had a Land Rover Freelander TD4 (late 2002 registered) that was coming up for replacement and I was looking to move away from an SUV on grounds of economy. The Freelander was giving me about 36.5 mpg over its full life, but I wanted to go back to a car. My driving had settled into long motorway or dual carriageway runs and a lot of city work, so something suitable was on my shopping list.

The new style Passat was a possible so I took myself down to the VW dealers for a look and a chat. The car looked great, but the diesel version was not due until too late for me as I needed to place an order within 4 weeks. I did look at a Golf before I left, but the compulsary lobotomy didn’t appeal.

As with many VW showrooms, the Audi dealer was next door and, because the transporter had blocked the exit with a load of new VWs, my only escpape was to drive round the back of the Audi lot.

Now this was just after the facelift that brought an Auto Union style grill to the front of the Audi range. As I drove around the back of their site they had several A3’s in this new look and one of them was in Toucan yellow. It stopped me dead.

To cut the story short I had ordered a two door 2.0 tdi before the end of that week, and this is the car that you see on my DriverJohn avatar.

I owned her for just over two and a half years and did about 80,000 miles in her before I had to give her back when I left Balfour Beatty. I got a lot of ribbing from mates and others for driving a “girly car”, but I didn’t care. It was, for me, a great looking motor, drove well and I never had trouble finding it in a car park.

John's A3

Over the time I used her she gave me over 56mpg and not a hint of trouble. I had the Bose sound system onstalled as an option and that was a fantastic addition giving me hours of quality listening on the long runs.

Having to let her go was a wrench, but the Jaguar made up for it in many ways.

Oh, and she was delivered via the Newbury Audi dealer – and I was born in Newbury.

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