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Performance boost for Audi A3 range

A plus: Audi's entry level A3 1.4 TFSI is the only variant to get both power and fuel economy improvements with a minimal price increase.

Audi A3 engines get power increase or improved efficiency with 2015 update

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Audi logo21 Jan 2015

AUDI has given its popular A3 small Sedan, Cabriolet and Sportback range a tune-up for 2015 with all variants benefiting from either more power or a reduction in fuel consumption.

The technical improvements have come at an increase to prices across the board, the largest of which is added to the top performing S3 which jumps up by $1200, while the entry level 1.4 TFSI Attraction has increased by a more modest $300 – now $35,900, before on-road costs.

That $300 price increase is applied to all other variants in the A3 range, with only the 1.6 TDI escaping any price alteration.

Audi's most affordable A3 is the only variant in the range to get both a power and efficiency increase, with output up by 2kW to 92kW and fuel consumption down to 4.9-litres per 100km from 5.0L/100km.

Sportback, Sedan and Cabriolet variants of the hottest A3 variant get 4 extra kilowatts taking the S3's 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder power output to 210kW and closer to the higher European spec vehicles, which can handle 221kW in a cooler climate.

The most frugal petrol A3 – the 1.4 TFSI COD gets the biggest increase to engine output up 7kW to 110kW but manages to maintain its low fuel consumption of 4.7L/100km thanks to Cylinder On Demand cylinder deactivation.

Its fuel economy is only beaten by the A3 diesel options, which in 2.0-litre capacity has cut consumption by 0.1L/100km to 4.4L/100km in Sedan and Sportback guise and 4.6L/100km with a soft top.

The 1.6 TDI Sportback is the only offering in the A3 to get no price increase, remaining at $36,900 despite getting a 5kW boost in power, taking output to 81kW from 77kW. The smallest diesel engine is also the A3 economy champ using just 3.9L/100km.

1.8 TFSI variants also get a small efficiency gains without any extra power, with economy improvements of 0.1L/100km for both Quattro and front-drive variants.

In Sportback guise, front drive efficiency is down to 5.5L/100km, all-paw versions now use 6.5L/100km, while the same transmission options in Sedan variants use 5.5L/100km and 6.4L/100km respectively.

Cabriolet models are slightly thirstier but fuel economy is still improved by the same margin as the hard-top siblings, with Quattro drop-tops using 6.5L/100km and two-wheel drive layouts drinking 5.7l/100km.

Power and efficiency enhancements are as a result of Audi's ongoing drivetrain development works, with gains coming from software and electronic updates rather than the introduction of new hardware or components.

Zero to 100km/h acceleration times and top speeds are unaffected by the engine update in all variants and equipment specifications also remain the same for the 2015 update.

Audi Australia senior product communications executive Shaun Cleary told GoAuto the company is satisfied with the performance of the A3 range and expects the latest product improvements to continue the positive local customer response.

“It was our biggest year last year combined when we got things like Sedan and Cabriolet coming on-stream later in the year,” he said. “That pushed it past Q5 overall, but yes – it's performing really, really well. Very popular.” The A3 range already extends to 17 variants across the Sportback, Sedan and Cabriolet models but the line-up is set to grow further with a new performance flagship arriving towards the end of the year.

With Audi's iconic five-cylinder engine and Quattro four-wheel drive system, the RS3 Sportback will continue the competitive heritage bloodline that started with the original Quattro in the 1980s.

“That's a model we are very keen to see in Australia because we see that our customers really have an appetite for that kind of high-end performance model and we are really pleased that we will be able to offer it,” said Mr Cleary.

The range could be expanded even further still if the new RS3 follows the trend of the existing models, adding both Cabriolet and Sedan versions of the 270kW 2.5-litre rocket to the A3 stable, but Audi is yet to confirm additional RS3 body styles.

Audi A3 pricing*
Sportback
1.4 TFSI $35,900 (+$300)
1.6 TDI (a) $36,900
1.4 TFSI COD (a) $38,500 (+$300)
1.8 TFSI $43,100 (+$300)
2.0 TDI (a) $43,200 (+$300)
1.8 TFSI Quattro $46,100 (+$300)
Sedan
1.4 TFSI COD (a) $40,100 (+$300)
1.8 TFSI (a) $45,400 (+$300)
2.0 TDI (a) $45,500 (+$300)
1.8 TFSI Quattro (a) $48,400 (+$300)
Cabriolet
1.4 TFSI COD (a) $47,600 (+$300)
1.8 TFSI (a) $52,200 (+$300)
2.0 TDI (a) $52,200 (+$300)
1.8 TFSI Quattro (a) $55,200 (+$300)
S3
Sportback 2.0 TFSI Quattro $61,100 (+$1200)
Sedan 2.0 TFSI Quattro $63,400 (+$1200)
Cabriolet 2.0 TFSI Quattro (a) $70,500 (+$1200)
*Excludes on-road costs.

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