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A3 Cabriolet 1.2 TFSI S-Line
7/10

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Road Test

Audi A3 Cabriolet 1.2 TFSI driven

Driven October 2010

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It's a very satisfying car, this 1.2-litre version of the A3 Cab. Not in terms of outright speed - it's not quick - but in terms of fitness for purpose. Think about it; a small, light, efficient little 1.2-litre petrol engine in a car that will probably spend most of its life cruising rather than aiming for a laptime.

The engine itself replaces the old 1.6, and is whizzy and free-revving, though you do have to stamp on it pretty hard to get the car to move at anything other than boulevardier pace. There is no roll-on acceleration in-gear; if you want to go faster, you need at least a couple of downchanges to deal with the relative paucity of torque.

The brakes are more than up to the job, and with a little encouragement you find there's much more chassis ability and grip than power ready to corrupt it - making for fun, if not overly challenging, messing about on a twisty back lane. Motorways get a little noisy, but nothing too intrusive.

But the 1.2 works, pays less tax and you get all the good bits of the A3 Cab as standard: super-quick roof that works when rolling, great cabin, handsome looks. The S-Line gets special bumpers and bigger 17-inch wheels - which admittedly look very nice, but clobber the ride a little - as well as a fully auto roof. We'd be tempted by a bog-standard car; summer fun with year-round practicality. Just don't expect to arrive anywhere quickly.

Tom Ford

On your drive for: £546pcm
Performance: 0-62mph in 12.2secs, max speed 118mph, 49.6mpg
Tech: 1197cc, 4cyl, FWD, 105bhp, 129lb ft, 1360kg, 132g/km CO2

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