One of our readers in San Francisco — a confirmed early adopter whose current car is a Passat W8 —has been waiting patiently for the arrival of the Audi A3 3.2 he has on order. Over the weekend, as he reports, the dealership just received the first two specimens, which he got a chance to
flog one of them mercilessly test-drive one. The car doesn't have all the toys he ordered, but he's willing to wait for his confirmed delivery in December. Thanks, Matt. (Full account after the jump.)
Turns out that Royal Motors in San Francisco received two of the A3 3.2 Quattros yesterday. Since I have mine on order, I got to drive one of these. It didn't have the options I ordered, so I'm going to wait for mine on its confirmed 12/19 delivery date.
The model I drove had most options including DSG, Tip, Cold Weather, Open Sky, etc (but no premium package and no navigation).
With their $2k markup, the price is $39k and change.
I'm not too impressed with the wheels that they stocked it with, though... I'll be buying new ones if my car shows up like this.
My driving impressions: The car is VERY quick. Much quicker than my Passat W8. Obviously this is a much different power to weight ratio, than the larger chassis of the W8.
The paddle shifters and DSG were smoother than anything I've ever driven. I drove it on city streets and on a slightly congested freeway, but was able to get it up to speed, back to zero, and up again. I drove it in sport, drive, and tiptronic with the paddle shifters. All modes were smooth and flawless.
The suspension was much stiffer than the 2.0T that I drove when those first came out, too.
All in all, it has a VERY S-Line feel to it. Very much like my friend's '04 S4 Avant. The seats are stiff, the suspension is very responsive, the tolerances are tight... Just what I was hoping for!
Audi to Bring A3 3.2 to the US in 2006 [internal]