The A3 has now covered 1,354 miles, with 300 of those accounted for by a round trip from Peterborough to the Wye Valley for a lads-only canoeing weekend.
This provided a good test of long-distance comfort and load-carrying performance.
The boot made a valiant effort to accommodate three people's assortment of tents, sleeping bags, clothes and alcohol. However, with every inch filled and one more person still to collect, it was obvious it wasn’t all going to fit in, leaving us to make use of the footwells and fifth seat for the remaining bags.
This was no embarrassment though – the Sportback's 380-litre boot is bigger than those offered by the Ford Focus, Vauxhall Astra and Mazda3 and matches the capacity of the Volkswagen Golf.
Performance was impressive. Fully loaded and with 90% of the trip covered at motorway speeds, the A3 averaged 50mpg with no obvious lack of power or adverse effect on the handling due to the extra weight.
All my passengers were impressed with the car's overall capabilities.
The return journey to Peterborough offered me the chance to hand over the driving and relax in the back.
This was the first time I’d travelled in the rear and first impressions were good; there is an impressive amount of rear legroom.
Forward visibility from the back seats, however, is poor.
The front seats are so big and while they offer great comfort and support for their occupants, they block most of the view for the rear seat passengers, leaving them to either crane their neck around to see out of the front, or just lay back and have a sleep.