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Yesterday during a dealer conference, Audi showed the upcoming RS 3 Sedan to retailers for the first time, confirming that the vehicle will indeed be coming to the United States. This, of course, isn’t anything new to readers of our site, who have known about the model’s American ambitions since March of last year. With that in mind, there are a few new tidbits that dropped yesterday that Audi fans should be aware of, so let’s break it down.
-The RS 3 will launch with roughly 400hp
When the car reaches our shores, its 2.5 TFSI will be boosted to somewhere around 400hp, up from the 360hp that we last saw in in the TT RS. More power is never a bad thing, especially when it comes directly from quattro GmbH.
-Shell seats will be an option
Americans have longed for the Euro-market OEM Recaro buckets since what seems like the beginning of time, and finally Audi has a solution. Utilizing a variant of the shell seats found currently in the R8, the RS 3 will be available with a decidedly racy seating option that passes US crash regulations. Could this then also open up the door for future models to be equipped with such seats? In a word- yes.
-To be released as a facelift
Much like the RS 4 before it, the RS 3 will come after the Product Improvement (facelift) A3 debuts, complete with Virtual Cockpit, updated headlights and a host of other improvements. From the looks of things, Audi is making a return to the days when the model lines shared one clear aesthetic (think B5, C5, D2 era) with the facelifted car, which we happen to like.
Manual purists won’t be happy, but the RS 3 will be made available with a 7 speed S-tronic box that can shift faster than you can blink, with no Manual option mentioned. This will undoubtedly give magazines and bench racers some impressive numbers, and add more fuel to the “Save the Manuals” battle cry.
We likely won’t get official stats and images until much later this year, but we’ll be sure to pass along any new information that comes our way.