Hot A3 Sportback revealed


Hot A3 Sportback revealed

Seat might have just released pictures of its sporty Leon SC coupe, but its German sister company Audi clearly fancied going hot in another direction – showing off the sporty five-door S3 Sportback.

Powered by a 295bhp version of the turbocharged 2.0-litre TFSI, acceleration to 60mph takes just 4.9 seconds with the optional S-Tronic gearbox, or 5.5 seconds with the six-speed manual.

Top speed is limited to 155mph. Yet despite all this performance, it is still capable of 40.9mpg on the Combined fuel cycle. The reason for these impressive fuel figures? Well, Audi has put the S3 on a bit of a diet.

Much of the 70kg weight saving has come from its ultra-high-strength steel passenger cell, plus lightweight aluminium wings and bonnet. However, on top of this – and despite its complexity – the new 2.0-litre TFSI engine weighs just 148 kg – five less than the previous one.

Audi S3 Sportback

Audi S3 Sportback

Outside, you'll spot the S3 from the front by its S-Specific grille with aluminium-look finish and platinum grey inserts, plus the reprofiled bumper with its large air intakes and the standard xenon headlights.

Move to the side and there are aluminium-look mirror covers and pronounced side sills. While at the back, the rear bumper has a grey diffuser which houses the quad exhaust system.

To make the S3 totally your own, there's the choice of 14 exterior colours, including S3 specific Panther Black and Estoril Blue. The S3 will make its debut at next month's Geneva Motor Show and will be available at UK dealers by September.

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