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Audi RS 3 SALOON RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic

Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
*images for illustrative purposes only.
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic
Audi RS3 RS 3 TFSI 400 Quattro Audi Sport Ed 4dr S Tronic

Key Info Compare

  • FuelPetrol
  • TransmissionAutomatic
  • MPG33.20
  • 0-62mph4.1 secs
  • Top Speed155 mph
  • C02194 g/km
  • BHP400
  • Torque354 lbs/f
  • P11D37%

Review

The Audi S3 Saloon takes the existing and successful S3 hatch and adds a boot to it, decimating its likely sales in the process. While a four-door S3 is still a lovely thing, it's going to appeal to a niche within a niche. Still, that 300PS two-litre turbo engine and four-wheel drive chassis combination fits the classic middleweight sports saloon genre to a tee.

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Audi's S3 Saloon might be the best fast car you've never heard of. Jonathan Crouch reports.

Background

To those of us who care about this sort of thing, the Audi S3 has always been a fast hatchback. Whether you got three doors or five, it didn't much matter. It was always furnished with a tailgate and that put it in with a very specific group of cars. More to the point, it lumped it in with a group of rivals that it could usually administer a sound battering to; cheaper models without the benefit of its all-wheel drive chassis or sumptuous build quality. That market has changed in recent years and so has the S3. It's now available as a saloon, looking for all the world like an Audi S4 short of a bit of growth hormone. The addition of a boot on the back shouldn't change things that much but it does. Sports saloons grow bigger and tougher than hot hatchbacks and the S3 Saloon has to face down some scary rivals if it wants to succeed.

Driving Experience

To most in this category, a sports saloon with four-wheel drive, a 2.0-litre turbo engine and a tall stack of attitude means either a Subaru Impreza WRX STi or a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo, both echoes from the past that nevertheless cast long shadows. Can the S3 Saloon match these performance icons? In terms of sheer pace, no. Nevertheless, it'll get to 62mph in a mere 5.4 seconds and keep going to an electronically limited 155mph, which is hardly hanging around. Although at first glance the 1984cc turbocharged engine looks similar to that which has gone before, it's completely different with a clever way of using direct and indirect injection to best effect. With twin balancer shafts and a long stroke, Audi claims it develops very a very smooth serving of torque; fully 380Nm all the way from 1,800 to 5,500rpm. That's impressive. The S3 is equipped as standard with a manual six-speed transmission with a lightweight magnesium case. The optional S tronic twin-clutch transmission features high efficiency and a tall sixth gear. The lower gears are short in the interest of dynamics, as is also the case with the manual transmission. The heart of the quattro all-wheel drive system is an electronically controlled and hydraulically actuated multi-plate clutch. In the interests of balanced axle load distribution, its located at the end of the prop shaft, in front of the rear axle differential. During normal driving, the clutch sends most of the engine's power to the front wheels. If traction decreases there, the clutch can transfer torque steplessly to the rear axle in just a few milliseconds by forcing the packages of plates together via controlled action. Audi drive select is standard in the new Audi S3. It incorporates the characteristics of the electronic accelerator, the boost of the progressive steering and the shift points of the optional S tronic. The driver determines with the push of a button whether these systems operate in comfort, auto, dynamic, efficiency or individual mode. In individual mode, drivers can compose their own preferred profile within certain limits.

Design and Build

Yes, the S3 Saloon does look astonishingly like an S4 that's been scaled down slightly. While some might not be fans of Audi's Russian Doll styling, there aren't too many surprises about the look and feel of this one. Given the upward trajectory of Audi's sales figures, perhaps that's no bad thing. So while it doesn't score well for originality, the S3 Saloon gets solid marks for execution with an S-specific single-frame grille and front bumper, aluminium-look exterior mirrors, pronounced side sills and a redesigned rear bumper incorporating a platinum grey diffuser and cut-outs for the exhaust system's four oval tailpipes, which feature chrome tips. The boot's carrying capacity amounts to 390-litres with the seats up - 50-litres more than the S3 Sportback. This capacity can be increased by folding down the split rear seat backs. The boot lid automatically swings upward when the release button on the key or the touch pad on the lid is pressed. The interior is classily executed with grey instrument dials using white needles, while the rev counter includes a boost pressure indicator. Between the dials, a driver's information system with rest recommendation supplements a 5.8-inch power-retractable on-board colour monitor. You'll also find a flat-bottomed leather multifunction sports steering wheel with S3 logo and aluminium-look shift paddles in S tronic-equipped models, as well as aluminium pedals and footrest and heated Nappa leather-upholstered sports seats.

Market and Model

Audi will ask just over £33,000 of you for an S3 Saloon with a manual gearbox, but most customers will add another £1,500 to that asking price for the S tronic twin-clutch gearbox. Dual-zone electronic climate control is fitted as standard, as is MMI, a sophisticated infotainment system that's well worth taking the time to master. There's a slimline, power-retractable, seven-inch monitor and 'MMI touch' integrated into the top of the rotary push button. The 'Audi Phone Box' set-up connects mobile phones to the vehicle in a convenient way and the sound system from Bang & Olufsen offers excellent sound quality, with LED light guides adding a bit of theatre to the door woofers. The assistance systems in the S3 come directly from the full-size class. The range begins with adaptive cruise control, which when combined with the safety system 'Audi pre sense front' brings the car to a stop autonomously from speeds below 19mph. Safety technology continues through Audi side assist, Audi active lane assist and camera-based traffic sign recognition all the way to the park assist system that'll steer you into a space. There are also a number of convenience options, including 'adaptive light' for the headlamps (also offered with variable headlight range control), and the keyless 'advanced key' system.

Cost of Ownership

The flipside of not being quite as aggressive and fire-breathing as some of the all-wheel drive sports salons of the past is that the S3 Saloon gets some very contemporary efficiency figures. Despite its complexity and high output, the 2.0 TFSI engine tips the scales at just 148 kilograms - shaving five kilos off the weight of the S3's previous unit. This reduction, combined with the extensive use of aluminium parts, helps to pare weight back to as little as 1,430kg. That's not at all bad for a four-door saloon. By contrast, a Nissan 370Z coupe is, for example, a hefty 1,526kg and is slower, thirstier and less practical than the Audi. The S3 Saloon records a combined fuel consumption figure of 40.9mpg with the S tronic gearbox and 40.4mpg with a manual 'box. The emissions figures are equally as good, the S tronic logging 159g/km and the manual 162g/km. That difference might well be significant for company car operators.

Summary

Let's wind the clock back a little to see what Audi has achieved with the latest S3 Saloon. In 2004, Audi gave us the S4 saloon, with its thunderous V8 engine. It got to 62mph in 5.4 seconds, averaged 21mpg, emitted 321g/km of carbon dioxide and cost just over £36,000. Today, we have the S3 Saloon, a car that's better built, better equipped and safer. It'll do 62mph in an identical time, yet nearly doubles the fuel economy and halves the emissions. It's lighter, more agile, offers more room inside and is cheaper to buy. What's not to like? Audi's problem is that we don't buy cars like this in isolation. And four-door saloons? If there's an alternative bodystyle, we tend not to buy those at all. The S3 Saloon is a smart and capable addition to Audi's range but it sits in a niche within a niche. Audi seem comfortable with that, but it means it'll remain a rare sight on our roads. Progress for the sake of progress doesn't guarantee sales.

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Driver Convenience
Audi parking system plus - acoustic and visual park assist system for front and rear
Cruise control + speed limiter
Audi connect
Audi drive select
Audi phone box with wireless charging
Audi smartphone interface
Audi virtual cockpit with RS specific display
Automatic start/stop system
Bluetooth interface
MMI navigation plus with MMI touch
Progressive power assisted steering
Service indicator
Voice control system
Entertainment
Audi sound system with 10 loudspeakers
2 USB interfaces and Aux-In jack
CD player
DAB Digital radio
MMI radio plus with 7" colour MMI screen and MMI controller
Two SDXC card slots
Exterior Features
LED headlights with LED rear lights + dynamic rear indicators
RS sports exhaust system
Solid paint
Audi Beam
Auto dimming rear view mirror
Automatic lights and wipers
Black door mirrors
Body coloured side sills extension
Electric panoramic sunroof
Electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors with integrated LED side indicators
Flared front wheel arches
Front and rear electric windows
Headlight washers
Heated rear window
Heated windscreen washer jets
Illuminated door sill trims with RS logo
Matt aluminium radiator grille frame including matt black quattro logo
Model and engine designation badges at rear
Privacy glass - dark tinted rear and rear side windows from B-pillar backwards
Rear spoiler
RS front bumper with large air inlets in gloss black and horizontal blade painted in body colour
RS3 badge on grille and luggage compartment lid
Interior Features
Black cloth headlining
3 adjustable rear headrests
3 Spoke flat bottomed leather/alcantara multi-function sport steering wheel + gear shift paddles in aluminium look, contrast stitching and RS badging
4 lashing points to secure luggage
60/40 split folding rear seat
Adjustable front centre armrest
Driver/passenger sunvisors
Dual zone electronic climate control
Fine Nappa leather upholstery with front super sports seats RS embossed logo
Front and rear interior lights with delay
Front head restraints
Front/rear floor mats
Heated front seats
Height/depth adjustable steering column
Illuminated glovebox
ISOFIX child seat mounting and Top Tether with front passenger airbag deactivation
Manual height adjustable front seats
RS gear lever knob in alcantara/leather gaiter with contrast stitching
Stainless steel pedals
Storage compartments in doors side trims, centre console and under front drivers seat
Tool kit
Safety
Tyre pressure warning
3 point seatbelts on all seats
ABS/EBD
Airbags - front driver/passenger, front & rear side, curtain, drivers knee
ASR
Black painted brake calipers with RS logo at the front
EDL
Electromechanical parking brake
ESC - Electronic Stability Control + traction control
Hill hold assist
Predictive pedestrian protection
RS brake system
Seatbelt warning
Warning triangle and first aid kit
Packs
Black Styling pack - RS3
LED interior light pack - A3/RS3
Non smoking pack - RS3
Storage and luggage pack - A3/RS3
Security
Anti theft alarm
Anti-theft wheel bolts
Immobiliser
Remote control central locking
Technical
RS sports suspension
Trim
Aluminium air vent surrounds
Aluminium trim elements
Carbon inlays
Wheels
19" 5 arm rotor style audi sport design alloy wheels in glossy anthracite black look with diamond cut finish
Tyre repair kit
Emissions - ICE
CO2 (g/km) 194
Standard Euro Emissions EURO 6
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb 214
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Max 214
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Min 214
Engine and Drive Train
Camshaft DOHC
Catalytic Convertor Yes
CC 2480
Cylinder Layout IN-LINE
Engine Code 8VMRWY
Engine Layout FRONT TRANSVERSE
Fuel Delivery TURBO DIRECT INJECTION
Gears 7 SPEED
Transmission SEMI-AUTO
Fuel Consumption - ICE
EC Combined (mpg) 33.2
EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies Yes
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb 9.5
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Max 9.5
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Min 9.5
WLTP - MPG - Comb 29.7
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Max 29.7
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Min 29.7
General
Badge Engine CC 2.5
Badge Power 400
Coin Description TFSI Quattro
Coin Series RS 3 Sport Edition
Generation Mark 3
Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07 46E
Manufacturers Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years 12
Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years 3
NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09 5
Did at least one aspect of this vehicle's safety give cause for concern? No
Special Edition No
Special Order No
Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage 60000
Standard manufacturers warranty - Years 3
Vehicle Homologation Class M1
Performance
0 to 62 mph (secs) 4.1
Engine Power - BHP 400
Engine Power - KW 294
Engine Power - RPM 5850
Engine Torque - LBS.FT 354
Engine Torque - MKG 49
Engine Torque - NM 480
Engine Torque - RPM 1950
Top Speed 155
Test Cycles
Emissions Test Cycle Second Act
Tyres
Alloys? Yes
Space Saver? No
Tyre Size Front 255/30 R19
Tyre Size Rear 235/35 R19
Tyre Size Spare TYRE REPAIR KIT
Wheel Style 5 ARM ROTOR
Wheel Type 19" ALLOY
Vehicle Dimensions
Height 1397
Height (including roof rails) 1397
Length 4479
Wheelbase 2631
Width (including mirrors) 1960
Weight and Capacities
Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres) 55
Gross Vehicle Weight 2060
Max. Loading Weight 525
Minimum Kerbweight 1535
No. of Seats 5
Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb 11

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* Prices shown based on 6 month initial payment.
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Selected Options
Optional Extras
Exterior Features
Audi exclusive paint £2,400.00
Auto dimming and folding door mirrors £275.00
Crystal effect paint £775.00
Metallic paint £575.00
Pearlescent paint £575.00
Interior Features
Power adjustable front seats £650.00
Rock grey cloth headlining FOC
Packs
Audi Sport pack - RS3 £1,200.00
Comfort and sound pack - RS3 Auto £995.00
Driver Assistance pack - A3/RS3 Auto £1,540.00
Driver Assistance pack with camera based traffic sign recognition - A3/RS3 Auto £1,540.00
Matrix LED Exterior lighting Pack - A3 £895.00
Paintwork
Audi Exclusive - Custom £2,400.00
Crystal - Ara blue £775.00
Crystal - Panther black £775.00
Metallic - Floret silver £575.00
Metallic - Glacier white £575.00
Metallic - Mythos black £575.00
Metallic - Tango red £575.00
Pearl - Daytona grey £575.00
Solid - Nardo grey FOC
Technical
Increased top speed to 174mph £1,600.00
Trim
Fine nappa leather - Black with Crescendo red stitching + front super sports seats with RS embossed logo FOC
Fine nappa leather - Black with Rock grey stitching + front super sports seats with RS embossed logo FOC
Fine nappa leather - Lunar silver with Granite grey stitching + front super sports seats with RS embossed logo FOC
* option prices shown are estimated