Audi’s performance RS line of cars were once reserved for European drivers only. But that’s changing as many of these stealthy, yet powerful models are finally arriving Stateside.
The latest is the pint-sized Audi RS3. But don’t let its stature fool you. Under the hood is an all-new 2.5L five-cylinder engine paired with a seven-speed S tronic dual clutch transmission. This setup produces a staggering 400 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. As a result, the RS3 can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and reach a top track speed of 155 mph, which can be increased to 174 mph with the optional Dynamic plus package.
Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive system is standard, so grip is always assured. It also features four drive modes, including comfort, auto, dynamic and individual. Each mode will adjust shift points, steering feel, throttle response, and damper controls, based on the driver’s preference.
Far more powerful than the A3 or even the S3, the RS has enlarged intakes and unique aerodynamic improvements to set it apart. And priced at just $54,900, the Audi RS3 is actually a relative bargain when compared to the BMW M3, or other sports cars that don’t offer the convenience of four doors.