If you liked what you saw with the new S3 three-door hatchback at last year's Paris Motor Show, but would prefer the same cosmetic and performance treatment on the more practical and roomier five-door model, you're in luck as Audi has introduced the S3 Sportback.
Using the A3 Sportback's body, which besides the two extra doors, also rides on a 35mm(1.38 in) longer wheelbase at 2,631mm (103.6 inches), Audi dropped the S3's 2.0-liter turbocharged four that delivers 296Hp (300PS) at 5,500 rpm and 380 Nm (280.27 lb-ft) of torque between 1,800 and 5,500 rpm under the hood.
A standard six-speed manual or an optional S tronic six-speed dual-clutch transmission, and Audi's signature quattro permanent all-wheel drive system send power to all four wheels.
According to the German brand, the S3 Sportback has a curb weight of 1,445kg (3,186 lb), a reduction of 70kg (154 lb) over the previous model. The S3 3-door tips the scales at 1,395 kilograms (3,075 lb).
With the manual gearbox, the S3 Sportback completes the standard 0-100km/h (62mph) sprint in 5.6 seconds (S3 3d: 5.4 seconds), while with the S tronic, in 5.0 seconds, which means that despite being 50kg heavier than the S3 3d, it beats its by 0.1 seconds. Top speed for all models is electronically governed at 250 km/h (155 mph)
The 2.0 TFSI consumes 6.9 liters per 100 km (34.09 US mpg) on average when paired with the S tronic, and 7.0lt/100km (33.6 US mpg) with the manual transmission, meaning it requires 1.5lt/100km less compared to the previous S3 Sportback.
The mods don't end with the engine as the S3 Sportback gains a stiffer and 25mm lowered suspension, bigger brakes, a tuned steering system and 18-inch wheels shod in 225/40-series tires.
Not surprisingly, the styling upgrades are shared with the three-door model and include a bespoke front bumper and chrome plated grille, side skirts, aluminum-look mirrors and roof bars (only on the Sportback), a rear diffuser and quad tailpipes.
Inside, the cockpit is kitted out with body-hugging sport seats, a flat bottom steering wheel, aluminum décor and plenty of electronic and comfort gadgets.
The new S3 Sportback will make its world premiere at the Geneva Auto Show next month before it goes on sale in Europe and other select markets around the world later this year.