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AutoExpress has published a new set of spy photos today, shots that clearly depict the upcoming Audi A3 Sportback from three different angles. Most notable, the Sportback breaks no major moulds established by the outgoing A3 Sportback – more stylish than the original first-generation A3 5-door but more Avant-like than other Sportbacks with names like A5 or A7.
Shots had surfaced before (report HERE) but they were grainy and not as detailed as this new collection from AutoExpress. The British magazine also expands a bit on details such as longer wheelbase and engine choices, but it doesn’t give an estimate on arrival. We’ve got no intel in this regard either, though a test mule being driven in the open suggests it’ll be soon… perhaps the Paris Motor Show in September.
As for performance, expect also to see S and RS versions of the A3 Sportback. One source suggests the S3 will feature a new high-output EA-888 2.0 TFSI pushing 280 hp and the RS 3 will continue to use the 2.5 TFSI 5-cylinder rated at 360 hp. The latter is expected to land in 2014.
Also significant is this model’s future in America. The idea of an American Sportback soldiering on following the launch of the A3 sedan’s arrival began primarily in the context of the Sportback representing alternative fuel or electric mobility only. We’re hearing now that the 5-door may be under reconsideration and that performance (at least S3 spec) might be an option. The American RS 3 will launch as a sedan (seen above in our exclusive render) and will likely only come in this form given the lower volumes and higher price of an RS model.
Back to the original AutoExpress piece on the A3 Sportback, we highly recommend clicking through to the link. The piece includes a set of three photos of the A3 Sportback, including details from the front and from the rear in addition to the profile seen above in our header. Find it HERE.