On paper, the Audi A3 TDI is an exercise in futility. The model shares platform bits with a Golf Rabbit. It’s smaller than a Jetta Sportwagen. It carries a lofty price premium; the diesel-powered A3 “boasts” the same engine that can be had across the street at the Vee-Dub for thousands less. It’s not as fast, sporty or capacious as the rear wheel-drive BMW 335d. By any rational measure, the A3 TDI is an answer to a question that few Americans even thought about asking. Which is why it’s better to judge the A3 TDI “in the flesh.”
Posts By: John Holt
Conceived in a desperate search of EPA credits, the Ford Escape has walked in the shadows of its bigger brothers, Explorer and Expedition. Despite the Escape’s loveless upbringing, it prevailed, providing easy cream on Ford’s SUV gravy [train]. In the last fuel surge, the Escape found favor: a future president escaped his Chrysler 300C for a gas/electric version of the venerable Fordette. In the ongoing clamor for right-sized, fuel efficient vehicles, one would think the Escape’s inner virtue would shine through. Instead, Ford stifled its middle child by birthing a clusterf*ck of overweight CUVs (Edge and Flex). For 2009, the Escape, again, eats from the scraps.