Have owned a 2017 A3 Sportback e-tron for a year. Love the car.

Discussion in 'Audi' started by CA e-tron owner, Feb 22, 2018.

  1. We have been in our 2017 A3 Etron for a couple of months now and are very happy with our purchase. Such a nice comfortable interior, and no complaints on performance. Thanks to this forum for helping us decide to buy it.

    We are still working out the bugs (like upping the trigger point for the annoying speeding alarm) but still quite happy with the range especially now that the warmer weather is here.

    New question - we were told during delivery that if we upgrade the software the pop up screen with the back up camera etc would be up permanently because back up cameras are mandatory on all vehicles in Ontario now. Does anyone have info on that? I really prefer to have the option to put it down when I am driving as I find it distracting but I'm not sure if never updating the software is a good strategy (or even possible).
    Domenick likes this.
  2. Frank K

    Frank K Member Subscriber

    My 2017 has a button to manually lower the screen. It is in the row of buttons where you can select the drive mode.
    Domenick likes this.
  3. Thanks Frank. Yes we have the button to raise and lower the screen too and it works great. What I was told by the dealership was that if I upgraded the software in Ontario, the button would no longer lower the screen. It had something to do with making it compliant with Ontario laws on back-up cameras. Heather
  4. JJW

    JJW New Member

    Hi all, brand new here. Have never owned an Audi or a plug-in hybrid before. Considering buying a used A3 e-tron plug-in w/ ~20K miles for ~$25K. Is this a bad idea?

    I like: the look, the price (I think?), the tiny sense of slight satisfaction that it’s better environmentally to buy a used car than new.

    I’m concerned about: the fact that this is essentially a discontinued car, it’s now three year old tech, battery life has been already diminished somewhat.

    Feel a bit lost in the woods, would appreciate anyone’s thoughts. Live in Los Angeles, and I tend to buy my cars outright - cash in full at point of purchase. Thank you!
  5. Frank K

    Frank K Member Subscriber

    Glad to see you considering moving to the world of electric driving ... I think it is fun and rewarding.

    The Audi A3 etron was my first Audi also (I have driven them before, but never owned one). It is one of the best cars I ever owned. Mine is a 2017 model and I have driven it ~ 28000 miles in 2.5 years. I have only seen seasonal variations in the batter range (13 miles in cold winter weather 0-25 F and up to 25 miles in the summer). So far every summer it recovered to the best range. When it was my main long distance car I got an average of 600 miles on a tank of gas, since I added a Tesla Model 3 for long range driving I drive the Audi more for short distance and get 1200 miles or more on a tank of gas, as I have more access to local charging.
    In terms of technology the Audi, except for a touch screen has pretty up-to-date features, it has good battery management and even after discontinuation of the model, Audi seems to maintain it well and still updates the software (including battery management).
    I think it is still a good car (even with access to a Tesla i still love driving it).

    As for the cost, it depends on the model year ... Blue Book is your friend to get an idea of the appropriate cost.

  6. Hi JJW.
    There are many more knowledgeable owners on the site, but I'll tell you what I think. We looked at a 2016 with a few miles under its belt, but decided against it as we were risk averse on battery issues. The battery system has a substantial warranty, but what we learned is that performance of the battery itself isn't (i.e. % of capacity) warrantied. What that meant to use was that we could buy it - have less than 1/2 the battery life in a year or two and have no recompense. The cost of a replacement battery we were quoted was very high so that didn't feel like a good choice. What we did do was buy a 2017 A3 with fewer miles. That said, your climate should offer better battery performance over the year. I totally agree used is better than new environmentally and not to have to pay the extra for that first little scratch. We do LOVE the car. It's loaded with all the tech adn drives really well. Good luck.
  7. JJW

    JJW New Member

    Thank you for the replies! Yes, the battery use/diminishment is the primary concern. We are wrestling with it.

    Anybody have a guess why I can find plenty of 2016 A3 e-tron cars for sale on CarMax, but not a single 2017? Is that because the initial lease period for Audi is always three years and thus the 2017 model leases haven’t yet expired?

    I heard from a friend who used to have this car that he was frustrated with the initial acceleration - that it’s laggy. I test drove the car and thought I felt this myself, but I may have been over-sensitive to it because of my friend’s warning. Anyone else feel this?

    Thanks again.
  8. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    Have owned a 2017 A3 Sportback e-tron since February 10, 2017. Love the car.

    Wish #3 fulfilled. Audi USA never helped on a towbar, but we finally found one specifically for the A3 e-tron at Stealth Hitches in Georgia (https://stealthhitches.com/). We had to give up on our Westfalia towbar from Germany and purchase this new unit. We drove to the San Francisco Bay Area to have it installed (A&B Trailer Hitch--http://www.abtrailerhitch.com/contact.php). After a couple minor problems with the installation, we now have a hitch which locks securely to the frame (no feedback), 7-pin plug including charge circuit, and can handle 2,000 lbs. easily, though the A3 e-tron can do 1600kg max. While not inexpensive ($650 for hitch and wiring harness, plus $400 installation), it works and tows our trailer very well. Our mpg dropped to 25.5 on the way to our camping spot, but 29.1 on the way home (headwind on way out). With installation of an Aeroplus Wind Deflector, we should see ~30mpg towing our 1,500lb. A-frame trailer on mostly flat land.

    Finally good news available for Audi, BMW, Mercedes owners who like to tow, but don't live in tow happy caravan loving Europe.
  9. A-a-ron

    A-a-ron New Member

    Hey all
    Thanks for all of the great a3 info.
    I am looking to replace a 2007 GTI and taking a look at an a3 Etron (2016 or 2017) or an eGolf (2017).
    I live in Chicago and have a SUV for really long family trips. This would primarily be a city commuter car, typically 20 miles a day).
    Both are a bit rare to buy in the Chicago area, the eGolf was only sold new in the east and west coasts.
    The cost on an a3 is approx $22k and the eGolf SE is around $17k. (Of course the a3 has leather, etc and is higher end than the eGolf.)
    My concerns with the a3 Etron is the battery system after a few years and also the overall hybrid system. It is 2 systems to breakdown or have troubles with.
    The eGolf is interesting however I will have to wire my garage for higher power charging.
    Is the a3 worth the higher price?
    Also any other thoughts on both would be great.
  10. CA e-tron owner

    CA e-tron owner New Member

    You should be able to find outstanding prices on VW eGolfs, since they are to be discontinued soon. All will move to the new chassis systems. The difference between the eGolf and the A3 Sportback e-tron are differences in what you want in your vehicle. If you are a single vehicle household, you might likely prefer the Audi. It does have more interior room than the eGolf and is more upscale, but you do only have ~20 miles electric range. We have not notice any battery degradation in our A3 e-tron, which we purchased in Feb. 2017, but we have also not driven it that much. We are only at 16K miles.

    We drive our Audi for in town trips which will fit within the 20 miles all electric range. For longer trips, we use our 2018 Tesla Model 3. The only long trips we take in our Audi are when we want to tow our small trailer for camping. That has been only twice since the towbar was installed, because COVID-19 has blocked nearly all our trips. The Audi, while it only has a 1.4L engine, has more horsepower and more torque than our 2004 Volvo V40 which we previously used to tow this trailer. The added benefit is that we can then drive all electric from where we are camping, if power is available at our site or nearby. If not, then we are usually in the 35-40mpg range in hybrid mode. Note than many CA state and national parks are adding free Clipper Creek Level 2 chargers (and some Tesla destination chargers), but I don't know how many other states are doing the same. This would add to the Audi's benefits on longer trips.

    The main benefit for the eGolf is that it is a BEV, full battery electric, without any gasoline use at all. It is not a Tesla in acceleration, but it is definitely quick off the line and can easily merge onto crowded freeways with short onramps. Driving full electric is simply something which can not be fully explained. You have to drive an EV to really understand. Getting a test drive is the best way. There are even "touchless" test drives available around the country, keeping customers safe. I would hearily recommend a test drive before you make any decisions.

    If you are truly interested in the Audi A3 Sportback e-tron, you can hold on for a year or so and the new chassis version should be available, WITH a larger battery pack, potentially offering 30+ miles of electric range, rather than 18-20 miles. I assume that the price also increase, but that is usually a given.

    You can also investigate the VW ID.4, which should be the size of the Tesla Model 3 and compare very well with specs. The negative is that a used Audi A3 Sportback e-tron would cost significantly less, but so would a used EV with 85 to 140 miles of range. Check here for info on how to search Kelly Blue Book for used EVs (https://www.saceva.org/finding-used-pevs-at-kbb).

    Good luck! By the way, we love both our Tesla Model 3 and Audi A3 Sportback e-tron and will NEVER return to all gasoline/diesel vehicles.

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