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Sportback meets all A3�s space needs

26.04.2013

HAVING launched the new-generation Audi A3 late last year, the luxury German brand has added a new derivative to the mix - the Audi A3 Sportback.

Essentially, this new offering will provide A3 customers with an option of two rear doors to the line-up.

As a key model in Audi’s armoury , the A3 has been a vital element in building the brand‘s success, as the car continues to impress. The Sportback hopes to build on this strong heritage.

DNA

Admittedly, the competition has become tough in this premium compact segment, particularly since the arrival of the highly anticipated Mercedes-Benz A-Class. But thankfully Audi’s strong genetic makeup has allowed this model to succeed. It also certainly doesn‘t hurt that it shares the same DNA as the remarkable and recently crowned World Car of the Year, the Volkswagen Golf 7.

Yes, the A3 uses the same phenomenal MQB platform found in the Golf, but its deboniar-like styling has helped bolster its appeal. The sharp lines and elegant silhouette complements the minimalist approach used in the interior styling.

The Sportback doesn’t see too many cosmetic changes over the three-door version, other than gaining two doors at the rear and being 35mm longer than its sibling.
In the engine department, it boasts an impressive powertrain line-up to meet the individual‘s driving needs.

Engine

Available at the launch were two TFSI engines. The 1.4-litre model kicks up 90kW of power and 200Nm of torque, which translates into a 0-100km/h sprint of 9.5 seconds and onto a top speed of 203km/h. It sips 5.3 litres/100km with a corresponding Co2 emmisions rating of 123g/km in manual guise. The S tronic option will get you off the line quicker, doing 0-100km/h in 9.3 seconds. It also houses a better fuel comsumption of 5.0 litres/100km and has a Co2 rating of 116g/km.

It makes for a nippy runaround. However, if you want something that’ll knock your socks off, or at least satisfy your desire for speed until the S3 arrives in August, then the 1.8-litre TFSI is for you.

Producing 132kW of power and 250Nm of torque, this hearty four-cylinder couldron propels the lightweight Sportback from standstill to 100km/h in 7.3 seconds and will gallop onto a maximum speed of 232km/h. The claimed fuel consumption is still impressive, averaging 5.6 litres/100km and 130g/km of Co2.

The hippy in the Sportback family, the 1.6-litre TDI, is the most efficient engine, using around 3.9 litres/100km with a Co2 emissions rating of 102g/km with the S tronic transmission.

Audi plans to grow the rest of the line-up substantially with the introduction of a frugal 1.2-litre TFSI in August this year. This will also see the introduction of a 1.8T FSI with a manual transmission and a 1.8T FSI paired with a quattro drivetrain.

Audi S3

The highly anticipated Audi S3 three-door and S3 Sportback will also be introduced to the local market in August.

The new Sportback will be available in either S trim line, which offers Bluetooth with voice control and audio streaming, as well as a knee airbag and LED interior lighting package, to name but a few. Additionally, it will also be offered in SE trim, which includes a sports suspension and sport seats along with 17-inch alloys and more. For the quattro spec, customers will receive Audi Music Interface and alcantara leather seating.

The Audi A3 Sportback‘s pricing will be as below, inclusive of all taxes and a standard  5-year/100 000 km Audi Freeway plan.

Pricing:
A3 Sportback 1.4T FSI manual S:    R 290  500
A3 Sportback 1.4T FSI S tronic S:    R 307  500
A3 Sportback 1.6 TDI S tronic S:    R 319  500 
A3 Sportback 1.8T FSI S tronic SE:    R 339  000

Available in August:
A3 Sportback 1.2T FSI manual S:     R 283 000
A3 Sportback 1.8T FSI manual SE:     R322 000
A3 Sportback 1.8T FSI quattro S tronic:    R370  000

Article written by Stuart Moir
26.04.2013
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