2018 Audi RS 3 Sportback

While the brand new Audi RS 3 sedan is already available from local dealerships, its Sportback sibling will only join the fray later in the year. November to be more precise. Both cars share the same engine and underpinnings, and really only different in the way they are shaped. The Sportback is of course the more practical of the pair because of its massive boot space and rear seat foldability. Interestingly it’s also cheaper than the sedan…

Just to get into the performance bits; it’s based on the 2.5-litre 5-cylinder turbo engine that draws out a stunning 294kW (or 400 horsepower in old speak) of power and a thumping 480Nm of torque between a rather early 1 700rpm and 5 850rpm. The result is a claimed 0 – 100km/h time of 4.1 seconds, which we believe is deliberately understated. Regardless, top speed is limited to 250km/h but can be delimited through Audi, to 280km/h. It is said to average 8.3 litres of fuel per 100km.

The RS 3 Sportback’s drivetrain is based on the quattro all-wheel-drive (AWD) but it’s the new kind of quattro; variable quattro essentially can send between 50% and 100% of the available drive force to the rear axle, depending on the driving situation. The 7-speed S tronic gearbox drives normally under the D mode, but becomes more responsive when put into S.

Some of the distinctive exterior marks displayed by the RS 3 Sportback include the new single frame front grille with brushed aluminium frame, RS 3 badging on the honeycomb grille and rear, LED headlights (Matrix LED headlights are optional), quattro monicker on the lower grille, brushed aluminium side mirrors, framed rear air diffuser and two large oval tailpipes. Given the correct motivation, those pipes will reward with excellent aural feedback to the tune of vrrrrrrr pha squared! Both sedan and Sportback are available in 8 colours, including the RS-specific tones Nardo Grey and Catalunya Red.

The interior is unlike other A3 Sportback models. Seats are sporty with RS decals and fine stitching, illuminated door sills bearing the RS 3 logos, while the multifunction steering wheel is flat-bottomed. Notice the rev counter has been placed at the centre of the Virtual Cockpit, just to emphasise the performance ability of this car. If the MMI Plus infotainment system is chosen then one also gets satellite navigation, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and wireless charging for certain smart phones among others. To top it all, a Bang & Olufsen Sound System with 705 Watts of music power with 14 speakers can also be chosen.


Audi RS 3 Prices

Sedan (R925 500)

Sportback (R895 500)

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