Audi has had some negative press recently over the A3’s claimed fuel efficiency figures.
It’s not just the A3, of course, or Audi for that matter, it is merely providing laboratory figures in accordance with European regulations and in line with other manufacturers.
And while it is almost impossible to get close to the official figures, which are obtained in laboratory conditions, at least car to car comparisons can still be made.
Would it be fairer for carmakers to supply real-world figures? Maybe not as the conditions could vary so much from test to test that it would be very difficult for any comparison to be accurate.
At least this way everyone is on a level playing field, albeit an inflatable one.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) will now be forcing carmakers to include a disclaimer in adverts to explain that quoted fuel economy figures may not reflect real-world performance.
At least this will help to make it clearer that what you see is not what you get.
Our A3 Sportback 1.6TDi Sport is currently returning around 50mpg, which I think is a good return, and as the car has only just covered 566 miles I would expect this to improve over the coming months.
Having previously struggled with a lack of space in the three-door A3, the rear doors and the slightly longer body of the Sportback make it a joy in comparison.
Although the three door model is the better looking of the two, practicality, a lower CO2 figure of 99g/km and higher (claimed) fuel economy figure make the Sportback a better car for me, as I imagine it will for the majority of fleets.