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2022 Audi A3: Choosing the Right Trim

For those luxury buyers who don’t need a big back seat or high-riding SUV but still want the versatility of having four doors and a usable trunk, the 2022 Audi A3 and Audi S3 offer the perfect solution. With a starting price in the low $30,000 range, the A3 provides Audi performance and luxury at a midsize family sedan price.

Move up to the S3, and you’ll get even more performance and features, but also a higher price tag.  For those who demand the ultimate in a small sport sedan, there’s the limited-production 401-horsepower Audi RS 3 due out later this year.

Audi redesigned the A3 and S3 2022, both inside and out. Both of these compact Audi sedans are still immediately recognizable. The A3 benefits from a new 48-volt mild-hybrid system that adds 12 horsepower and 37 lb-ft of torque during take-offs. The system, which improves EPA combined fuel economy by 2 mpg, works seamlessly, but the A3 still feels just adequately powered.

Much more thrilling is the new and considerably more expensive 2022 Audi S3, a corner-carving compact sports sedan that benefits from a new type of adaptive suspension that offers better control on varied surfaces than the system used previously. The S3 also profits from a new stability control program that can be shut off entirely or put into a sporty setting that intervenes only when this Audi begins getting way out of shape.

2022 Audi A3 Premium (starting at $33,900)

2022 Audi A3 Premium Front Left Driving in Black
The 2022 Audi A3 Premium is now available, starting at $33,900.

The Premium A3 is Audi at its most basic, nicely equipped but lacking some high-end features expected of a luxury car. The A3 is pulled by its front wheels, although quattro all-wheel-drive is a $2,000 option. All A3 sedans use a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine good for 201 horsepower.

The A3 Premium comes equipped with necessary safety systems, most of which are required by federal law. They include full airbag coverage for the front passengers and side curtain airbags covering the front and rear seats. Electronic traction and stability control comes standard, as does a rearview monitor, anti-lock brakes, and a tire pressure monitor.

Above the required safety system, the A3 includes rear side-impact airbags and electronic child locks. Standard driver assists include lane departure warning, automatic high-beam headlights, and Audi Pre Sense Basic that prepares the cabin when a collision is imminent. Just before impact, the system tightens the front seat belts and closes the windows and sunroof.

Pre Sense Front alerts the driver to a possible collision by applying light brake pressure and shaking the steering wheel. If the driver takes no action, the system will apply full brakes to stop the vehicle before a collision can occur.

Observing the A3 Premium’s exterior features, you’ll find heated power side mirrors, 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic on/off LED headlights, and rain-sensing wipers. LED taillights with dynamic turn signals and Alu-optic aluminum window surrounds are also included.

The A3 Premium features keyless push-button start, leather seating surfaces, a panoramic glass sunroof, and heated front seats. The Premium’s 8-way power-adjustable front seats have 4-way power lumbar support, while the tilt/telescopic steering wheel contains controls for Bluetooth phone connectivity, information screen, and audio. Just behind the steering wheel are rear-mounted paddle shifters and a separate stalk for operating the cruise control.

The rear seats are divided in a 40/20/40 split-folding design and feature a center folding armrest, while the center console includes rear vents, a temperature control dial, and two USB C charge ports.

Tri-zone automatic climate control is standard, thankfully operated via a row of hard buttons located just below the 10.1-inch touch-screen infotainment system. The Premium gets the most basic infotainment setup but does include wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

We see a 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster from the driver’s seat with a central information screen for viewing various functions such as audio settings and Audi Drive Select modes. Drive Select allows the driver to choose differing modes for controlling throttle aggressiveness, steering feel, and transmission shift points.

In addition to quattro all-wheel drive, the 2022 Audi A3 Premium offers a few options. The Convenience Package adds Advanced Key proximity key fob for unlocking and starting the vehicle, auto-dimming power-folding side mirrors, driver’s seat memory, and SiriusXM satellite radio. The package includes a blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert and Park Assist automatic parallel and perpendicular parking assistant.

The Black Optic Sport Package brings a sport suspension, black exterior trim, and 18-inch bi-color finish alloy wheels.

With the $1,045 destination charge, the 2022 Audi A3 Premium costs $34,945. On a 60-month loan at 3% financing and zero down, the monthly payment comes to $628. See 2022 Audi A3 Premium models for sale

2022 Audi A3 Premium includes:

  • Leather seats – a nice upgrade in a base model car. Leather seats give a premium feel befitting a luxury brand.
  • Digital cockpit – Audi’s digital display replaces traditional analog gauges with digital reproduction. The system looks slick and is configurable via a button on the steering wheel.
  • Tri-zone climate control – allows front and rear-seat passengers to select the degree to which heating or cooling is applied.
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto – allows wireless integration of an Android or Apple smartphone into the A3’s infotainment system.

2022 Audi S3 Premium (starting at $44,900)

2022 Audi S3 Premium Driving in Red
The 2022 Audi S3 Premium is now available, starting at $44,900.

The S3 is the performance variant of the A3. It adds a 306-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged engine capable of sprinting the S3 to 60-mph in just 4.5 seconds. Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive is standard.

The S3 Premium includes all of the standard equipment in the A3 Premium. It then upgrades said equipment with 18-inch wheels, sport front seats, a sport suspension, a revised steering feel, a body-colored trunk-mounted rear spoiler, and stainless steel pedals.

The S3 Premium also comes with a black headliner and black brake calipers.

Options above the A3 Premium include 19-inch wheels, and the Black Optic Package adds black exhaust tips, black exterior trim, black mirror caps, a black roof, and bi-color 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in non-run-flat summer tires.

With the $1,045 destination fee, the 2022 Audi S3 Premium costs $45,945. On a 60-month loan at 3% financing, the S3 Premium’s monthly payment comes to $826. See 2022 Audi S3 Premium models for sale

2022 Audi A3 Premium Plus (starting at $37,200)

2022 Audi A3 Premium Plus Driving in Blue
The 2022 Audi A3 Premium Plus is now available, starting at $37,200.

The Premium Plus includes all the features of the Premium as well as the contents of the Premium’s Convenience Package.

It then adds adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, a wireless charging pad, a garage door opener, and LED headlights with signature daytime running lights.

In addition to the Black Optic Sport Package, the Premium Plus offers the Technology Package that adds a 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit display, MMI navigation, Audi Connect Prime with a 6-month trial subscription, and a 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system with 3D sound.

The Interior Styling Package adds agate grey birch wood inlays and upgraded LED interior lighting.

With the $1,045 destination fee, the 2022 Audi A3 Premium Plus costs $38,245. On a 60-month loan at 3% financing and zero down payment, the monthly bill comes to $687. See 2022 Audi A3 Premium Plus models for sale

2022 Audi A3 Premium Plus includes:

  • Adaptive cruise control – keeps a constant set distance between the A3 and the traffic ahead, capable of slowing or speeding up as the range changes.
  • Wireless charging pad – makes it easy to keep your phone charged without having to hassle with untangling power cords and finding an open USB port.
  • Park Assist – with the driver operating the brakes and gear shifting, park assist handles steering duty when attempting to parallel or perpendicular park.
  • Audi Advanced Key – requires merely having the key fob on your person to unlock the doors and start the car.

2022 Audi S3 Premium Plus (starting at $47,700)

2022 Audi S3 Premium Plus Front Right in Lime Green
The 2022 Audi S3 Premium Plus is now available, starting at $47,700.

The S3 Premium Plus combines all the upgrades from the S3 Premium with the standard equipment on A3 Premium Plus.

Optional equipment above the A3 Premium Plus includes Nappa leather seating with diamond stitching and the S Sport Package, which adds an adaptive sport suspension and red brake calipers.

With the $1,045 destination fee, the 2022 Audi S3 Premium Plus costs $48,745. On a 60-month loan at 3% financing and no money down, the monthly payment comes to $876. See 2022 Audi S3 Premium Plus models for sale

2022 Audi A3 Prestige (starting at $41,200)

2022 Audi A3 Prestige Front Left in Blue
The 2022 Audi A3 Prestige is now available, starting at $41,200.

The Prestige is the best equipped of the A3 lineup, as befitting a top-of-the-line model. It includes all the features in the A3 Premium Plus and the Technology Package and Interior Style Package contents.

Additional equipment unique to the Prestige includes animation for the LED headlights and taillights, a head-up display, and headlight washers for the matrix LED headlights.

The Black Optic Sport Package and 18-inch wheels are the only available upgrades.

With the $1,045 destination fee, the 2022 Audi A3 Prestige sells for $42,245. On a 60-month loan at 3% financing and zero down, the monthly payment comes to $759. See 2022 Audi A3 Prestige models for sale

2022 Audi A3 Prestige includes:

  • Virtual Cockpit – Audi’s color configurable digital cockpit offers numerous screen options, including converting to a full-sized navigation screen.
  • Bang & Olufsen audio – this 15-speaker sound system is leaps and bounds above the standard Audi audio and a must-have for music lovers.
  • Head-up display – projects pertinent information in the driver’s line of sight, avoiding the need to look away from the road.
  • Headlight washers – clean dust and dirt off the headlights, so you don’t have to.

2022 Audi S3 Prestige (starting at $51,500)

2022 Audi S3 Prestige Front Left in Blue
The 2022 Audi S3 Prestige is now available, starting at $51,500.

The S3 Prestige mirrors the A3 Prestige’s standard equipment and offers the same optional upgrades on the S3 Premium Plus. Options include Nappa leather, the Black Optic Package, 19-inch wheels, and the S Sport Package.

With the $1,045 destination fee, the 2022 Audi S3 Prestige costs $52,545. On a 60-month loan at 3% financing as zero down, the monthly payment comes to $944. See 2022 Audi S3 Prestige models for sale


What is the best 2022 Audi A3 trim?

The Premium Plus trim has the best balance of luxury and technology features while keeping the price reasonable.

How many mpg does the 2022 Audi A3 get?

The Audi A3 gets 29 city/38 highway mpg with FWD and 28 city/36 highway mpg with AWD. The sportier S3 with standard AWD gets 23 city/32 highway mpg.

Which 2022 Audi A3 trim level offers the most safety?

The Premium Plus and Prestige trims offer more standard safety features than the base Premium model like adaptive cruise control, active lane assist, and more. The 2022 A3 has not been crash-tested by the IIHS or NHTSA.

Joe Tralongo
Joe Tralongo
Joe Tralongo is a longtime contributor who started in the industry writing competitive comparison books for a number of manufacturers, before moving on in 2002 to become a freelance automotive journalist. He’s well regarded for his keen eye for detail, as well as his ability to translate complex mechanical terminology into user-friendly explanations. Joe has worked for a number of outlets as... Read More about Joe Tralongo

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  1. Still don’t know if my Audi A3 2022 has power exterior mirrors after reading this . They appear to be very stiff to turn by hand !!

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