The big news behind the new Audi RS Q3, due on the market next year, is how much more powerful it is going to be.
Powering the car is a 2.5 litre five-cylinder TFSI and, with the extra power, its sprint time – how fast it can go from 0 to 62 mph – is reduced from 5.2 seconds to 4.8 seconds. It top speed is an electronically limited 155 mph. Giving the engine its individual sound is an RS exhaust system with a switchable flap.
In spite of its high speeds, the RS Q3 still demonstrates great fuel economy compared to how powerful it is. According to official tests, 32.8 mpg is achievable.
It comes with seven-speed S tronic transmission as standard, which uses a new hydraulic multi-plate clutch to transfer power to the quattro drivetrain. This clutch has been refined so that drivers can change gear faster. The car’s lower gears are closely spaced so that the car can accelerate strongly and the seventh gear has been added in to make it more economical.
RS sports suspension comes as standard but it can also be supplemented by the optional addition of electronically controlled damping adjustable, which drivers can control through Audi drive select.
Brake discs, which are large and gripped by eight-piston calipers on the front axle, are now one kilogram lighter thanks to their new wave design.
The RS Q3’s wheels are particularly sizable and measure 20 inches in diameter. To show off the status of the RS vehicle, Audi have given it RS-specific body detailing. These features include a high-gloss black honeycomb front grille and RS bumpers. On the front of the vehicle is a quattro emblem in the air intake, while at the back is a distinctive rear diffuser insert which is flanked by a large elliptical tailpipe.
On top of of the car is a roof spoiler and roof rails in matt aluminium. Adding emphasis to this are special door sill plates and door trim strips.
Inside the car are sports seats that have been upholstered in Fine Nappa leather and have stitching to contrast. On the instruments there are red needles on grey dials and there is a Driver’s Information System that offers a special RS menu with lap timer, oil temperature and boost pressure displays.
The RS Q3 will be available from January 2015, with first deliveries due in spring. However, prices have yet to be announced. It is part of the latest Q3 range from Audi, of which the first models have become available to order for between £25,340 and £30,820.
Among the features that are present across the range are Xenon or all-weather LED headlamps that are fitted as standard, depending on which version of the car you choose to buy.
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