2022 Audi A3 sedan increases output, but no Sportback for us

Jonathon Ramsey

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Audi revealed the new A3 sedan a few months ago, followed by the new A3 Sportback. Now it's also been revealed that the U.S. market is only getting the sedan, and it's not due until late 2021 as a 2022MY offering. When it arrives, it will bring just one powertrain that splits the two currently offered. Right now, Audi gives U.S. buyers the choice of the A3 Sport 40 TFSI, a front-driver powered by a 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder with 184 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque, and the A3 S line 45 TFSI, the Quattro goer with the same engine making 228 hp and 258 lb-ft. When the 2022 A3 sedan appears next year, an A3 40 TSFI with a 2.0-liter turbo four helped by a 48-volt mild-hybrid system will be Hobson's Choice, output totaling 201 horsepower. The hybrid help is tuned for ultimate efficiency, able to shut down the engine sooner and keep it shut down longer. Audi's figures say driving roughly 62 miles saves a tenth of a gallon. Playing the long game, see.

The S tronic seven-speed dual-clutch automatic will carry over, the solitary model offering both front-wheel drive and Quattro all-wheel drive. Car and Driver writes that pricing will come in "under $35,000;" the 2020 A3 40 TSFI starts at $33,300 before destination.

In Europe and other markets, engine choices extend to 1.0-liter three-cylinder and 1.5-liter four-cylinder gas engines, and a 2.0-liter diesel, at least one of them providing the option of a manual transmission. Also excluded from our shores, the A3 Sportback in any guise, causing us to miss out on the updated plug-in hybrid version, the A3 S line — we get regular A3 and RS 3 only — and because the A3 hatchback is dead to us, so too is the A3 convertible.

Our A3 sedan will eventually be joined by a new S3 that increases the puissance of its 2.0-liter turbo four from 288 hp to beyond 300 horses. The RS 3 bows after that, with all expectation that its 2.5-liter turbo five-cylinder will crest the 400-hp mark. That output would keep it ahead of the current 375-hp AMG CLA 45 on sale in the U.S., and put it in the ring with the rumored 400-hp BMW M2 Gran Coupe.

Otherwise, we've seen the A3 preview that augurs a sedan grown by 1.7 inches in length, an inch in width, and 0.6 of an inch in height. Its angles have been put to the whetstone outside and in, and refined standard and optional tech will include handwriting recognition, a head up display, surround-view camera, and better adaptive cruise control.


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