A Life In Cars

The life story of Dickie Sutherland

The A3 on factory 17″ and summer tyres


A3 LHD Hatch

Whilst living in Norway, Jenna and I were lucky enough to have a brand new Audi A3 hatch back - left hand drive.

Moving to Norway in 2017 was a very exciting time for Jenna and I. Jenna had taken a lucrative “ex pat” contract at company headquarters and a company car was part of the package.

I recall her being able to select a Audi, VW or Skoda to the value of around AUD 70,000 and I poured over the options. A small VW Toureg SUV was a top choice, but I had heard great things about the Audi A3.

Just within the price cap, we’re able to find a Quattro (all wheel drive), 2.0L turbo-diesel, manual Audi A3.

Not quite a sporty as the petrol version, but who could complain with this.

The company didn’t really allow black or bright colours, but we’re told this was the old one available at short notice. It was nicely decked out with a little extra chrome trim, radar cruise, lane control and Apple car play. It also had sweet LED running lights and that cool indicator that would light up from one end flashing towards the other.

Being a LHD, manual we both had to come to grips with driving on the wrong side of the road and shifting gears with our right hand. Jenna hadn’t driven a manual for years, but soon enough, we’re off all over the country in this thing.

The upside of COVID 19

Although we’d missed a lot of overseas travel due to the onset of the COVID 19 pandemic, this meant we actually spent more time holidaying in Norway.

In the summer of 2020, we travelled from Stavanger up to Alesund, including the Atlantic Road and Trolls Ladder – which were some of Norway’s most epic drives. Staying in Norway also meant a lot more ski trips during the winter months, with no other option to leave the country.

We particularly loved the weekend cabin trips to Hovden where the all-wheel-drive set up thrived on winter tyres throughout the 4 hour trip each way (including a ferry trip, dozens of tunnels and hundreds of corners).

Temperatures of -20 to -25 were not uncommon one season, showing us another side to motoring.

From new to about 35,000 kms the black 2017, Audi A3 served us very well and offered an insight into the German manufacturer.

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