2022 Audi RS3 - with 401 HP - The turbocharged inline-five returns | MiniAuto

Starting price: $61.000 USD

In the 1980s, Audi fitted its angular Coupe with a turbocharged inline five-cylinder engine, all-wheel drive, and boxy fenders, making it the legendary Quattro to be the brand's performance standard-bearer. And nearly 40 years later, it's that same basic formula that will transform the company's entry-level sedan into the fiery 2022 Audi RS3.

Like the original Quattro and the previous generation RS3, there's a turbocharged five-cylinder under the hood. The new variant also introduces torque vectoring Quattro all-wheel drive, and it will be available in some markets as both a five-door hatch (Audi says “Sportback”) and a four-door sedan . That said, only the sedan will come to the US market, although Audi has stopped short of denying that it is considering bringing the hatchback over, presumably due to the cult desire of the RS6 Avant station wagon. Either way, the entire RS3 family promises to be more dynamic than ever.

Still using the 2.5-liter turbocharged inline-four we enjoyed in the previous RS3, but with a few tweaks that result in more power and torque. The new RS3 now has 401 hp and 369 pound-feet of torque, an increase of 7 hp and 15 pound-feet over the previous US RS3 2020. Audi claims it will sprint to 62 mph in 3.8 seconds, but we think it'll be quicker than if we had the previous generation RS3 to 60 mph in 3.4 seconds. . A seven-speed dual-clutch automatic is again standard across the board, and a variable exhaust produces a distinctive five-cylinder sound.

The RS3's upgraded all-wheel drive system features torque transfer to the rear wheels. It redirects power differently depending on the driving mode selected, and there's a drift mode called RS Torque Rear that can redirect torque to a single rear wheel to slide on the track.

Audi claims best-in-class acceleration from the 2022 RS3, thanks in part to the 2.5-liter inline-five that turbocharged within an inch of its life. The global model will produce 394 horsepower (294 kilowatts) and 369 pound-feet (500 newton-meters), but in a strange turn of events, the American model will actually produce more power than the rest of the pack. its brethren on the Continent. With 401 hp, the US RS3 is only 7 horses more than the Euro version (and the old RS3), but it's still a pleasant surprise. That 369 torque is also a 15 percent increase over the upcoming compact sports sedan.

The RS3 also sounds good. We're not surprised, given how brilliantly the old model sang, but it's still nice to hear a five-cylinder blatantly glide across the track - especially when paired with a clutch transmission. dual seven-speed quickshifter. That powertrain sends power to all four wheels via Quattro all-wheel drive with a new RS Torque Splitter for the '22, which replaces the rear differential to divert up to 100% of the torque. twist for either wheel as needed, combating understaffing by oversteering the outer wheel at corners.

That's not the only trick up the sleeve of this front-wheel drive platform. There's a unique drive mode, RS Torque Rear, that sends as much force as possible to the rear wheels, facilitating slight skids (on a closed track, obviously). Meanwhile, the same new RS Performance mode balances the power distribution more sensibly, and Audi claims it almost eliminates the excess and the lack to get the engine really quick.

The Audi RS3 2022 features a standard sport suspension with vehicle-specific shocks and racks, improving response and preventing performance degradation. However, adaptive suspension is available, with active dampers that continuously adjust based on road conditions, driver needs and driving mode settings. In either case, the RS3 has more camber than before, a technical choice to improve grip in corners (but possibly sacrificing some tire wear).

Other changes over the standard A3 and the upcoming RS3 are bearings, a stiffer subframe and stabilizer for the double wishbone front suspension. The stiffer rear wheel helps absorb some of the lateral force generated by the RS Torque Divider, and the variable-ratio steering changes its response based on current conditions. Finally, the RS3 is 1 inch (25 mm) lower to the ground than the A3, keeping the center of gravity low to improve forward response.

Further improving controllability are standard steel brakes with six-piston calipers up front. However, Audi will happily fit a set of ceramic front and steel rear brakes that are larger than their standard counterparts, improving heat resistance and in the case of the front rotors. , reduce the rotational mass.

The Audi RS3 2022 will go on sale in Europe next month, with prices starting at 60,000 Euros for the Sportback and 62,000 Euros for the sedan - $70,832 and $73,193, converted to the US. We'll only get the sedan, of course, and we won't be subject to value added tax either, so we're assuming the new four-door RS3 will start at around $61,000 or so before options. It will be slightly more expensive than the 2020 RS3, which starts at $57,195 before it's retired, and the new sedan will clearly top the A3 family, which includes the $44,195 Audi S3.

2022 Audi RS3 - with 401 HP - The turbocharged inline-five returns | MiniAuto 2022 Audi RS3 - with 401 HP - The turbocharged inline-five returns | MiniAuto Reviewed by Dang Nhan on July 20, 2021 Rating: 5

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