With its variety of powertrains and body shapes, the A3 is able to go up against most anything in the growing small luxury set.
Its principal competitor is probably the Mercedes-Benz CLA, which is offered in tamer 250 models with and without all-wheel drive as well as an AMG version to go up against the S3.
It has a striking, mini-CLS design and solid driving dynamics but gives up some room to the A3 sedan in the rear seat.
The Buick Verano has the advantage of seniority, and it's a well-executed compact with a plush, quiet cabin and excellent safety scores, though it lacks a more-than-premium image; the Verano will be joined in 2016 by the related Cascada convertible.
Acura's ILX has been somewhat of a disappointment: the interior is only slightly nicer than the quick-update Honda Civic and performance was lackluster to start, although for 2016 it returns with improvements all around and a single improved powertrain backed by a dual-clutch automatic.
Still, it's no Integra.
The Volvo S60, which is nearly seven inches longer than the A3 but a few inches short of the A4, is another option.
The S60 comes with a more fuel-efficient turbo four and an eight-speed automatic (with a 37-mpg highway rating) at the base level—and it feels like a much more refined car for just a little more money.
BMW's 2-Series matches on price and is offered as a coupe or convertible, although it's a rear-driver, with optional all-wheel drive.
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|2016 Audi A3Browse Used Listings||2016 Acura ILXBrowse Used Listings||2016 BMW 2-SeriesBrowse Used Listings||2016 Buick VeranoBrowse Used Listings||2016 Mercedes-Benz CLA ClassBrowse Used Listings||2016 Volvo S60Browse Used Listings|
|23 MPG City / 43 MPG Hwy||25 MPG City / 36 MPG Hwy||18 MPG City / 35 MPG Hwy||21 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy||23 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy||18 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy|
|Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4||Premium Unleaded I-4||Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4||Gas/4-cyl||Intercooled Turbo Premium Unleaded I-4||Intercooled Turbo Regular Unleaded I-4|
|Subcompact Cars||Compact Cars||Subcompact Cars||Compact||Compact Cars||Compact Cars|
|4-Door Sedan FWD 1.8T Premium Plus||4-Door Sedan||2-Door Coupe 228i RWD||4-Door Sedan w/1SV||4-Door Sedan CLA 250 FWD||4-Door Sedan T5 Drive-E FWD|
|Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Rear Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive|
|Auto-Shift Manual w/OD||Auto-Shift Manual w/OD||Manual w/OD||Automatic w/Manual Shift||Auto-Shift Manual w/OD||Automatic w/OD|
|Detailed Spec Comparison|
|2016 Audi A3 vs. 2016 Acura ILX||2016 Audi A3 vs. 2016 BMW 2-Series||2016 Audi A3 vs. 2016 Buick Verano||2016 Audi A3 vs. 2016 Mercedes-Benz CLA Class||2016 Audi A3 vs. 2016 Volvo S60|