NEW AUDI RS3 SEDAN

Now offered as both a mega-hatch and saloon, the RS3 packs a bigger punch to go with its broader repertoire.

Under the bonnet is the all-new five-cylinder turbo that first debuted in the TT-RS. Its output is up by 24kW on the previous RS3 engine (itself a multiple winner of its Engine of the Year category) while its weight has dropped by 26kg, thanks mostly to a lighter alloy block and a magnesium sump. It also features a two-phase injection system, better cooling and less internal friction. Audi engineers simply do not rest on their laurels.

The sedan boasts a handsome, well proportioned body with great poise and purpose. The roofline is lower than that of the Sportback and the rear track is wider, improving the stance. The weight difference between models is negligible. Both feature ample (functional) air ducting either side of a single-frame front grille and bold ‘quattro’ lettering beneath it. A standard RS sports exhaust exits through two broad oval pipes that flank the rear diffuser.

A seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox deploys the immense power with brutal efficiency and the thanks to launch control. The stiffened RS sports suspension comes with adaptive damping for on-the-move tuning, and the wider tracks promote sharp turn-in to bends and neutral handling. Meanwhile the quattro system flatters with its unflappable all-weather traction.

The cabin features black fine Nappa leather RS sport seats with integrated head restraints. The RS sport leather steering wheel blends leather with Alcantara grips and is flattened at the bottom.

The Audi virtual cockpit, with its 12.3-inch screen offers all key information, including navigation, while a bespoke RS screen displays information on torque output, g-forces and tyre pressures. ‘Race’ Aluminum inlays complete a decidedly sporting arena.

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AUDI RS3 SEDAN

ENGINE 2480cc 5-cyl turbo

POWER 294kW (395bhp)

TORQUE 480Nm from 1700-5850rpm

TRANSMISSION 7-spd S-Tronic auto

DRIVETRAIN four-wheel drive

LENGTH 4.48m

WEIGHT 1515kg

WHEELS 19-inch five-arm alloy

TYRES 235/35 (f) 235/35 (r)

0-100km/h 4.1 secs

FUEL CLAIM 8.3L/100km

PRICE from $106,900

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