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2022 Audi RS3 overview | CarExpert


Whereas the broader Volkswagen Group steams in direction of an electric-only future, the 2022 Audi RS3 principally stated “yeah, nah”.

Say howdy to the latest sub-4.0-second hyper hatch (and sedan). Primarily based on the identical MQB Evo underpinnings as the brand new Audi A3, and due to this fact the Mk8 Volkswagen Golf, the new-generation Audi RS3 Sportback and Sedan refuse to bow to emissions rules, soldiering on with the model’s iconic five-cylinder engine structure.

It’s as fast as its ever been – taking a claimed 3.8 seconds to dash from 0-100km/h utilizing Launch Management – and in contrast to all of its rivals it has an odd cylinder depend that brings with it a particular engine notice.

Past the enhancements to efficiency with restricted tinkering to the two.5-litre five-pot’s outputs, the RS3 has extra gear and tech than earlier than, and sports activities a brand new RS Torque Splitter on the rear axle that brings with it a drift mode – not that Audi would utter such uncouth phrases itself.

So, all of the makings of a brand new benchmark, proper? We attended the Australian media launch in Adelaide to search out out.

How a lot does the Audi RS3 value?

Provided in a single specification in two physique kinds, pricing begins at $91,400 for the RS3 Sportback and $93,900 for the RS3 Sedan – all costs excluding on-road prices. Which means you’re six figures drive-away for what’s a small, however very quick automotive.

Whereas it’s an enormous ticket for a compact car, the RS3 in each our bodies noticeably undercuts its arch enemies, the Mercedes-AMG A45 S ($99,895) and Mercedes-AMG CLA45 S ($118,495). The Audi quotes a 0.1-second faster 0-100 time, so in the event you’re this by way of the bang-for-buck lens, it’s already on the entrance foot.

The Audi and AMG have few different pure rivals, both having to have a look at less-wild nameplates just like the BMW M135i xDrive ($72,900) and Volkswagen Golf R ($65,990), or at sports activities vehicles just like the BMW M240i xDrive Coupe ($91,900) or Toyota Supra GTS ($96,494).

Inside Audi’s personal secure there’s the mechanically-related TT RS Coupe ($141,191) in order for you the identical drivetrain with extra tempo, although it’s considerably costlier and fewer sensible, and in the event you want more room for the youngsters and canine then you might take a look at the additionally mechanically-related RSQ3 ($95,391) and RSQ3 Sportback ($98,391).

2022 Audi RS3 pricing:

  • Audi RS3 Sportback: $91,400
  • Audi RS3 Sedan: $93,900

Costs exclude on-road prices

MORE: 2022 Audi RS3 price and specs

What’s the Audi RS3 like on the within?

Having examined the common A3, then the S3, and now the RS3, the cabin presents few surprises.

As you’d anticipate, the basics are fairly acquainted from its lesser siblings, with a number of fine details scattered across the place to remind you that you simply’ve paid for absolutely the pinnacle of the line-up.

Higher but, the Kyalami Inexperienced RS3 Sportback you see within the pictures (additionally the precise automotive I piloted for the highway drive), was fitted with the non-obligatory RS design bundle with Microammata inexperienced highlights all through the cabin – seat accents, vent trim highlights, seatbelt accents and distinction stitching.

The RS design bundle additionally will get you an attractive Alcantara steering wheel, which is probably not for all tastes however I’m personally right here for it.

When you’re sat within the electrically-adjustable RS sport entrance seats (no massaging features in the mean time as a result of semiconductor scarcity), you’re reminded of the A3’s nice ergonomics within the more and more touch-capacitive age.

Every little thing falls handy properly, you will get the seat good and low within the cabin, and the shows are all angled towards the motive force so all of the dwell digital data you want is going through you.

Forward of the motive force is Audi’s wonderful 12.3-inch digital cockpit plus show, which is bigger than the ten.25-inch customary unit in base A3 fashions and provides the RS ‘runway’ tacho and speedo show possibility over the S3.

The digital instrument recreation is arguably Audi’s to lose, with a variety of layouts and out there widgets, whereas additionally being simple sufficient to make use of that almost anybody ought to have the ability to determine find out how to set it up how they need it.

Construct high quality is nice, however not fairly as rock stable as Audis of previous. A number of the supplies used really feel low cost within the mid and decrease tiers of the cabin, and components just like the dashboard (which juts out on the passenger) and the centre console with Porsche 911-style shifter don’t really feel financial institution vault ranges of tied down – it feels a minimum of as upmarket as an A45 S, nevertheless, if no more so.

All of the contact factors, thoughts you, have that typical Audi really feel in that they’re soft-touch and really feel of a top quality, and the switchgear does that signature ‘click on’ that’s grow to be a trademark of the model’s interiors.

In contrast to its VW Golf sibling, the A3’s (and due to this fact RS3’s) cabin persists with bodily controls for the local weather controls and another key features just like the Audi drive choose modes. Altering the temperature, fan velocity, or drive mode is a cinch, and also you shouldn’t end up flicking or urgent the improper factor such as you would possibly with touch-based programs.

I’m not the most important fan of the aforementioned Porsche-like shifter, although. It’s fairly small (measurement issues) and doesn’t really feel as satisfying to make use of as a standard gearshift – I wanna clunk it into place and relaxation my hand on it, sue me.

As with the S3, the large entrance seats eat into the second-row considerably. That stated, I’m 6’1 and will spend an affordable period of time behind my very own driving place alright.

Being an A3, there’s loads of facilities like rear air vents, a fold-down centre armrest with cupholders, bottle holder sin the doorways, ISOFIX anchors on the outboard positions and top-tethers for all three rear seats.

Because the all-wheel drive {hardware} eats into the underfloor area within the boot, baggage capability within the RS3 is decreased for each the Sportback and Sedan, quoting 282L and 321L respectively with the rear seats in use.

Fold the 40:20:40-split seats down, and the Sportback’s boot grows to 1104L – Audi doesn’t quote a determine for the RS3 Sedan with the seats folded. There’s no spare wheel both, only a tyre restore equipment.

What’s below the bonnet?

Energy within the RS3 as soon as once more comes from a 2.5-litre turbocharged five-cylinder petrol engine, which on this newest iteration era 294kW (5600-7000rpm) and 500Nm (2250-5600rpm). It’s up 20Nm on the previous automotive.

Drive is distributed to a quattro variable all-wheel drive system that defaults to a entrance bias, although as talked about earlier there’s an RS Torque Rear mode because of the swish new clutch-based rear torque splitter. Shifting gears is a seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch automated with steering-mounted paddle shifters.

Audi quotes a 0-100 dash time of 3.8 seconds – a 0.3s enchancment over the outgoing mannequin – with an ordinary electronically restricted high velocity of 250km/h. Go for the RS dynamic bundle plus ($13,000) that provides carbon-ceramic brakes, and the highest velocity raises to a supercar-rivalling 290km/h. Wow.

The RS3 claims to make use of 8.2-8.3L/100km on the mixed cycle (Sedan-Sportback), with its 55-litre gas tank demanding 98 RON premium unleaded. All variations of the Audi A3, S3 and RS3 are fitted with a petroleum particulate filter (PPF).

How does the Audi RS3 drive?

The RS3 has lengthy been one thing of an attainable dream automotive of mine, so I wasted no time planting my bum within the driver’s seat of the intense inexperienced Sportback you see right here with non-obligatory carbon bundle – it’d be impolite to not.

Our highway loop took us from the Adelaide Airport to Tailem Bend, through the winding South Australian hills. Irrespective of which automotive you are taking by way of these areas, it’s a shocking backdrop.

The highway drive began with navigating Adelaide’s metropolis streets after which up into the mountains. As you’d anticipate from a VW Group scorching hatch, the RS3’s adaptive dampers make gentle work of metropolis and concrete roads of their consolation setting, and even the sports activities exhaust system retains issues civilised however nonetheless with a delicate burble from the five-cylinder engine.

It’s easy setting off from the lights and the seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch auto is without doubt one of the best examples of the breed this aspect of Porsche’s PDK. There’s little if no jerking or hesitation as is frequent with this sort of shifter, and it at all times appears to have you ever in the correct gear on the proper time.

As we ventured into the fantastic rolling inexperienced hills outdoors of the Adelaide CBD, the signed velocity limits received greater and the roads received windier, giving us an opportunity to see simply how grippy this offended inexperienced machine will be.

In comparison with customary variations of the A3, the RS3’s entrance monitor has been widened by 33mm, and the rear 10mm. It really catches your eye as you stroll as much as the car, given most efficiency autos are wider on the rear.

What this implies is the RS3 feels very hunkered down on the entrance, and feels noticeably extra tied down than earlier iterations. Quick Audis have had a fame for understeering up to now, however this factor simply factors and goes.

This newest iteration of the MQB structure appears to have actually added one other edge to the driving dynamics. The steering is fast, correct and fairly aware of driver inputs. Positive it’s not the final phrase in suggestions, however you at all times know what the entrance wheels are doing.

It gave us the boldness to push more durable and carry extra velocity into corners – which translated to some enjoyable instances on the racetrack, as we’ll get to shortly.

Having 500Nm on faucet simply after 2000rpm offers you a wallop within the again has you energy out of corners, however there’s additionally a smoothness and linearity to the ability supply that makes this factor deceptively fast. It simply flies.

The added traction of quattro all-wheel drive offers you confidence in all climate circumstances, as we discovered going by way of areas with rain and roads splashed with tree particles, stones and the like.

On tight, lumpy nation roads the RS3’s journey didn’t deteriorate even in its firmest settings. We performed with the completely different modes, together with dynamic and RS Efficiency, which not solely agency issues up and tighten up response, but in addition open up the exhaust valves earlier within the rev vary in order that signature five-pot soundtrack is nearly at all times on.

The sound alone is some extent of distinction amongst the RS3’s rivals. Every little thing else is four-cylinder pushed and the soundtrack is both too tame or too synthesised or contrived. There’s a child R8 V10 vibe about this little hatchback.

Every little thing about this automotive on the highway places a smile in your face. And on this specific shade of inexperienced, you’ll get a whole lot of consideration too – if that’s your factor, after all.

The RS3 is fairly pleased at a cruise too, with the ultimate stage of our highway drive going down over high-speed nation highways in direction of Tailem Bend, with signed velocity limits of 110km/h.

With customary adaptive cruise help (cruise management + lane centring), the RS3 presents the identical Degree 2 autonomous driving functionality as different A3/S3 variants in addition to its platform mates, which means this corner-carving hyper hatch is greater than able to dealing with a highway journey in the event you’re recreation.

Sadly, useful help options like blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic help are unavailable for brand spanking new orders as a result of ongoing international semiconductor scarcity, although the respectable glasshouse and nicely-sized mirrors imply outward visibility isn’t horrible.

Audi’s adaptive cruise help system additionally consists of visitors jam help, which can speed up, brake and preserve the car centred in its lane in low-speed conditions like visitors jams. It additionally consists of emergency help which can gradual the car down and pull over if the motive force turns into unresponsive.

My solely actual gripe almost about open-road touring is that the large wheels and thinly-sidewalled efficiency tyres generate a whole lot of highway noise, which is already an annoyance in decrease fashions. It’s extra acceptable right here considerably given the efficiency intent, however on the flipside it’s additionally a close to $100,000 compact car with a premium badge.

We hit the monitor at The Bend the next morning, getting a number of guided laps within the RS3 following an Audi Driving Expertise teacher in an RS5. The Bend is a reasonably tight and technical circuit, significantly so within the configuration chosen for this even. We received about three laps that progressively upped the velocity.

Just like the highway drive, I used to be tremendous impressed with the RS3’s turn-in, grip and highway holding. It really feel gentle on its ft and eager to level its nostril wherever the wheel was turned, and we have been shifting with some respectable tempo.

Once more that superb five-cylinder turbo at full noise not solely sounds epic, however blasts you out of corners in tandem with the sure-footedness of quattro all-wheel drive, and on the principle straight I’m fairly positive I noticed the speedo tick over 240km/h. Not unhealthy in any respect.

For those who benefit from the odd monitor day, the RS3 is a stack of enjoyable for all ability ranges and genuinely fast round a circuit. In spite of everything, the RS3 Sedan did recently set a Nurburgring lap record for the ‘sports compact class, with a time of seven minutes 40.748 seconds – an entire 5 seconds faster than the earlier file holder, the Renault Megane RS Trophy-R.

We additionally trialled the brand new RS Torque Splitter on the skid pan to see how rear-drive this variable all-wheel drive will be. It really works, however it takes a little bit of apply balancing throttle and steering lock to cease it from reverting again to a entrance bias while you carry off the throttle – or possibly I’m simply hopeless.

What do you get?

RS3 highlights:

  • 19-inch Audi Sport solid alloy wheels
  • 265/30 entrance, 245/35 rear tyres
  • RS sport suspension with adaptive dampers
  • Purple brake calipers with RS brand
  • Matrix LED headlights
  • RS exterior design bundle
  • RS exhaust system
  • Metallic and pearl impact paint
  • 12.3-inch Audi digital cockpit plus with RS shows
  • Head-up show
  • 10.1-inch MMI contact infotainment
  • Satellite tv for pc navigation
  • Wi-fi Apple CarPlay
  • Wired Android Auto
  • Wi-fi telephone charger*
  • DAB digital radio
  • Audi join plus providers
  • 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen premium audio, 680W
  • Superb Nappa leather-based upholstery with RS honeycomb stitching
  • Massaging entrance seats*
  • Digital tailgate (Sportback)
  • Heated, folding and dimming aspect mirrors with reminiscence
  • Electrical entrance seats
    • incl. 4-way energy lumbar help
    • Reminiscence operate
  • Color ambient lighting
  • 40:20:40-split folding rear seats

*As a consequence of international part shortages, some customary and non-obligatory gear gadgets are usually not out there to order


RS design bundle, Purple or Inexperienced: $2150

  • Steering wheel in Alcantara with distinction stitching
  • Seat belts in black with colored edge (purple or inexperienced)
  • Seat shoulders in Dinamica microfibre (purple or inexperienced)
  • RS ground mats in black with distinction stitching (purple or inexperienced)
  • Centre bar on entrance air vents in colored end (purple or inexperienced)

Carbon bundle: $7400

  • Carbon roof spoiler (Sportback)
  • Carbon lip spoiler (Sedan)
  • Black styling bundle plus
  • Aspect skirt with inlay in carbon
  • Exterior mirrors in carbon

RS dynamic bundle plus: $13,000

  • RS ceramic brake system
  • Purple, blue or anthracite gray brake calipers
  • Prime velocity elevated to 290km/h

Matte aluminium styling bundle: $2000

  • Matte aluminium end exterior accents
  • Honeycomb entrance grille in high-gloss black
  • Exterior mirrors in aluminium

Is the Audi RS3 protected?

The Audi RS3 is unrated by ANCAP and Euro NCAP, although front-wheel drive A3 fashions put on a five-star ranking.

Class scores included 89 per cent for grownup occupant safety, 81 per cent for youngster occupant safety rating, 68 per cent for weak highway person safety, and 73 peer cent for security help.

Normal security options embody:

  • 7 airbags incl. front-centre inflator
  • Audi pre-sense entrance (AEB)
    • Pedestrian and Bike owner detection (as much as 85km/h)
    • Automobile to car crash mitigation (as much as 250km/h)
  • Adaptive cruise help
    • Adaptive cruise + lane centring
    • Cease/go operate
    • Site visitors jam help
    • Emergency help
  • Blind-spot monitoring*
  • Rear cross-traffic help*
  • Exit warning*
  • Maintain help (hill begin help)
  • Park help
  • Entrance and rear parking sensors
  • 360-degree digital camera system*

*As a consequence of international part shortages, some customary and non-obligatory gear gadgets are usually not out there to order

How a lot does the Audi RS3 value to run?

The RS3 is roofed by Audi Australia’s five-year, unlimited-kilometre guarantee along with a 12-year producer guarantee for bodywork in opposition to corrosion perforation.

A five-year service plan will be bought any time throughout the first 12 months of possession for $3580. By comparability, a five-year service pack for the AMG A45 S prices $5150.

Two-year Audi Benefit packages will be bought on high of the usual plan, which incorporates two extra years of scheduled servicing and two years of roadside help past the preliminary guarantee interval for $3800.

When it comes to real-world effectivity, our dynamic highway drive after which monitor session wasn’t consultant of real-world circumstances, and didn’t yield a report-worthy effectivity readout given the spirited nature of the circumstances.

CarExpert’s Tackle the Audi RS3

Audi’s newest compact efficiency hero is a winner.

It’s quick, enjoyable and appears bonkers, however continues to be able to carting round your folks, youngsters and/or the canine.

It’ll beat supercars from the visitors lights, disgrace sports activities vehicles on the race monitor, and at full noise it shames all different present high-performance hatchbacks for aural pleasure. It additionally now has a drift mode to match the A45 and previous Focus RS.

There’s heaps of personalisation choices out there so you can also make your RS3 as distinctive as you, whether or not that’s delicate gray/black or eye-popping inexperienced or yellow. Plus, the non-obligatory carbon-fibre equipment brings out the boy racer vibe to go up in opposition to the A45 S’s out there aero bundle.

Positive, it’s not good – it will get just a little noisy on coarse roads, some options are unavailable proper now, and $90,000-$100,000 is quite a bit to pay for one thing primarily based on a VW Golf – however it’s considerably extra inexpensive than its direct AMG rival (extra so in the event you examine the RS3 Sedan to the AMG CLA45 S) and equal gear ranges.

I’ll take an RS3 Sportback in Kyalami Inexperienced with the carbon bundle and carbon-ceramic brakes, fairly please.

Click on the photographs for the complete gallery

MORE: Everything Audi RS3

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