First Sketch: Audi A3 Concept

If compact performance sedans rock your socks, prepare your feet for some wicked sweet riffs. The Geneva auto show will host a four-door sedan concept that hints strongly at the upcoming third-generation Audi A3, which will be the first VW Group car based on the company’s latest modular transverse platform. (It will also underpin the next Golf.)

The Audi A3 concept takes Audi's current styling language a step further, borrowing many design elements from the new A6 and stuffing them into a more compact and vibrant package. The new grille shape, as seen on the A1, A6, and A8, carries over to the new A3. We like the shape of the LED taillights, and the construction and layering of their assemblies are mirrored in the headlights, which are also LED units. The futuristic door handles and side mirrors look great, but they probably won't make it into series production. Dimensionally, the A3 concept is longer (at 174.8 inches versus 168.9), wider (72.4 versus 69.5), and lower (54.7 versus 56.0) than the current A3 hatchback.

If you find the lower front air intakes on the A3 concept a bit menacing, there’s a good reason: Behind the aggressive snout lurks Audi's wonderful 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-five, which the company says makes 408 hp here. It sends power to all four wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch S tronic automatic. This is the same engine that powers the Quattro concept; it’s also found in the current TT RS and RS3, but it makes “just” 340 hp in those models.

Thanks to: Car and Driver


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