By on August 8, 2019

We’ve got some shocking news for convertible fans. The Audi A3 Cabriolet is still on sale in North America.

Did you forget that it existed? We sure did. Fortunately, this isn’t a problem we’ll have going into 2020, as this is to be the model’s last year. Of course, this changes next to nothing as we haven’t seen one in the wild some time. In fact, it’s difficult to recall the last occasion any automotive outlet even bothered reviewing one.

As the spiritual successor to VW’s now-defunct cabriolets, the open-air A3 occupies an interesting place in the market. It’s a little pricey for most parents looking to treat their college-aged daughters, with a starting MSRP of $39,000, and lacks the oomph and prestige of Audi’s other drop-top offerings. 

The manufacturer didn’t attribute any specific reasons for the Cabrio’s death when it spilled the beans on Car and Driver, but we know it’s due to slumping sales. American A3 volumes have been dwindling every year since 2015 and convertibles have not grown in popularity over the last decade.

With the A3 gone, Audi’s smallest and most affordable droptop will be the equally doomed TT (starting at $48,400). Meanwhile, the more-popular A5 is presumed to maintain its sales advantage  — regardless of whether or not it comes equipped with a roof. The automaker said it will continue selling both models in the United States for the foreseeable future.

Rather than the 184 horsepower 2.0-liter (40 TFSI) turbo that comes standard on the A3 Cabriolet, the TT comes ready with pumped-up the 228-hp (45 TFSI) variant and quattro all-wheel-drive A3 owners would normally have to pay extra for. Unfortunately, the sprightly TT still ends up costing more in the long run. Those seeking more power will have to settle for the hardtop TTS or spurge on an A5 convertible.

[Image: Audi]

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10 Comments on “Audi A3 Cabriolet Reportedly at Death’s Door...”


  • avatar
    MartyToo

    “It’s a little pricey for most parents looking to treat their college-aged daughters, ”

    Exactly! This is a chick car and just how many could they sell. My neighbor (male) has one and every damn time I see it all I can think of is that he’s driving a car fit for his daughter. To tell the truth I am not sure if he owns the VW or and A3 version, BUT IT IS AN EFFIN CHICK CAR either way.

    In his defense, I did see his daughter drive it ONCE.

    You have to wonder what was mis-wired in the head(s) of the design department when they offered these. It’s almost the runt version of the ugliest Sebrings or whatever other misshapen jelly bean….

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    I think they sold six of these last year. Probably not much of a loss.

  • avatar
    thejohnnycanuck

    Kill it. Kill it with fire.

  • avatar
    hpycamper

    I bought one last year, and other than some electrical gremlims, it’s a very good car. Fast, solid, smooth. And I like the way it looks, although I would say the A5 convert is nicer looking. It’s a shame that convertibles don’t sell the way they used to. I’m glad I got mine before the end.
    Also, I don’t know how the whole chick car thing started about convertibles. Must be some generational thing because when I started driving lots of guys were driving MGs, Triumphs, Healeys and any other convert they could get. Chicks drive SUVs and CUVs.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      I drove one of these; ended up with an A3 sedan instead. I’m glad I did. I liked the convertible, but it’s a little duller and a lot less practical than the sedan, which isn’t exactly a paragon of people-and-stuff-moving goodness.

      • 0 avatar
        hpycamper

        Don’t know about the duller part, but to do practical stuff I have a Honda Element, which my wife prefers to drive.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          Well, the convertible was a *little* duller, but not by much.

          I tried the convertible out on a lark, though – going in, I knew I needed something with four doors and a (mostly) usable trunk. As much as I’d like a convertible – and the A3’s a very good one – I can’t get away with it right now.

  • avatar
    JoeBrick

    This is what Buick should be selling- a $39,900 convertible. Maybe they would not have to commit hari-kari if they did.

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