Year

2017 Audi RS 3 Pricing

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Model Type

Sedan

pros & cons

pros

  • Ridiculous power in a relatively compact car
  • Refined interior with excellent materials
  • Lots of high-tech features that are easy to use
  • Aggressive styling without being cartoonish

cons

  • Limited interior storage and cargo space
  • Likely has a stiff ride quality
Audi RS 3 Sedan MSRP: $54500
Based on the quattro AWD 5-passenger 4-dr Sedan with typically equipped options.
EPA Est. MPG N/A
Transmission Automated_manual
Drive Train All Wheel Drive
Displacement 2.5 L
Passenger Volume N/A
Wheelbase N/A
Length N/A
Width N/A
Height N/A
Curb Weight N/A
Audi RS 3 Sedan MSRP: $54500
Based on the quattro AWD 5-passenger 4-dr Sedan with typically equipped options.
  • Sunroof/Moonroof
  • Post-collision safety system
  • Pre-collision safety system
  • Upgraded Headlights
  • Leather Seats
  • Alarm
  • Heated seats
  • Electronic Folding Mirrors
  • AWD/4WD
  • Back-up camera
  • Keyless Entry/Start
  • Apple Carplay/Android Auto
  • Audio and cruise controls on steering wheel
  • Tire Pressure Warning
  • Rear Bench Seats
  • Multi-Zone Climate Control
  • Trip Computer
  • USB Inputs
  • Parking sensors
  • Auto Climate Control

Audi RS 3 2017

2017 Audi RS 3 Track Test

We've been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the 2017 Audi RS 3 on our shores, and it's finally here. Edmunds Road Test Manager Jonathan Elfalan gets his hands on the 400-horsepower pocket rocket, in Catalunya Red, to find out how quickly it'll clear a quarter-mile and then spends a few laps around the handling circuit to suss out how well it gets around corners. He'll also have a look at the interior to see how it compares against the popular Audi A3, on which it is based.

Transcript

JONATHAN ELFALAN: Ladies and gents, that is an Audi RS 3. So what makes this car special? Well, it's based off of the Audi's popular A3. But it has double the horsepower, 400 horsepower 354 pound-feet of torque, Quattro all-wheel drive. What else do you need? Let's go. OK, so the RS 3 only really comes in one configuration. That's with the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, as well as the turbocharged inline-five Now, as much as we like manual transmissions, I can't really argue with this box because it makes things really easy. Especially if we're trying to get the best acceleration time here. So to start, we're just going to leave everything as is, as if you were to just turn on the car and mash the gas. Drive. Auto. And here we go. All right. This car gets off the line pretty good. There's about a half-a-second delay in between when I put my foot down and when it actually leaves. But after that, once the engine spools up, there's really not much-- there's not much waiting after that. Let's turn ESC off. Sport mode selected. OK, so for launch control, Audis in the past that we've tested, generally, you just mash the brake, mash the accelerator, and something fantastic is supposed to happen. All right here we go. Oh, yeah. Oh, that's much better. [LAUGHS] Woo. What an improvement. OK, so driving this car around, you get a sense that there's a little bit of turbo lag down in the lower ranges. And only when you're really going for it does it feel like it stays within its power band. So if you can take that terrible lag out of the equation, the result is pretty great. So we dropped a full second off of our 0 to 60 time, zero wheel spin off the line. So we confirmed that the RS 3 is fast, as suspected. But take a corner. Let's go find out. I really wasn't expecting it to actually handle this well. It's got a little bit of weight over its nose, just like the TT RS. So the weight bias is closer to, like, 58% over the front. And so I was expecting it to be a little bit more pushy, a little more prone to understeer. It actually feels like it has a little better balance, and the Quattro all-wheel drive system actually adjusts as you change the mode. So it's looking at sending more of the torque back to the rear wheels. It can only do so much because this is a front-drive system. You're not going to be able to send a ton to the back. It's usually maybe up to 50%. Despite the front bias nature, it feels relatively well-balanced. This has a staggered front-to-rear setup. But this time, it has the bigger tires on the front end, 255-millimeter wide tires versus 235s for the rear. And what that's going to do is it's going to provide this car more front grip than it does rear. So you notice I'm shifting gears with the paddles here. There's good response from the paddles. You don't have to wait a whole second for the gearshifts to actually occur when you ask for them. Audi actually also has this sport mode here that I'm going to switch into. It's supposed to do the shifts for you. It does a pretty good job. It's not as aggressive as we would be with the paddles, so it's downshifting as you're exiting a corner, not really setting you up ideally for the exit. But again, with this dual clutch being so quick, it reduces the number of things you have to think about when you're driving. So while it's maybe not as playful as a rear-drive car, it's definitely more confidence-inspiring. It's probably suitable for somebody that may not have a ton of track experience. It's a little bumpy. And that's because we have the optional dynamic sport plus package, which outfits the RS 3 with a thick suspension, carbon ceramic front brakes, and a couple of other things. Good for, I think, dynamics. As a daily driver, it's definitely going to be a little too busy for most. Standard equipment in this is Audi's magnetic ride adaptive suspension. And that's going to give you options. You can run in comfort mode. You can run in auto. And then you have a dynamic setting, so that's going to have a specific tuning for the RS. And I think that should work pretty well. And then you don't have to put up with the ultra-stiff suspension when you're just going out for groceries. This inline-five this isn't a perfect engine. It has a little bit of turbo lag that really manifests itself when you're not driving it hard. In this situation, it works fantastic because you're always in the boost, you're always higher in the revs, and you never really have a chance to fall out of that. When you're driving this on the street, off the line, I've been in situations where it took a half a step too long for the boost to come in, and I found myself not being able to merge or make, like, the lane changes quick because there was a car coming up in the other lane. And I found myself in those situations more often than not. It's a shame, because I really like this engine. And when you're wailing on it, it's insane how quickly you can drive this thing. This is the interior of the RS 3.R And as you can see, it looks very similar to an A3. So Audi does a really good job with their design. It's elegant, but it's not overdone. It's functional, but it isn't plain. They strike probably one of the best balances between remaining very functional and easy to use, but also making everything look clean. But we've got this really nice, big digital dash that Audi calls its virtual cockpit. It's fully configurable. You can have a large tach in the front if you're driving this thing spiritedly, or you can have it set to display an entire navigation map. The way that this differs from other cars, like the TT RS or the R8 is it has a secondary screen. It actually retracts and pops up when you need it to. They've split the functionality a little bit between the screens, so you don't have to control all the vehicle settings and stuff through here with the thumb wheels. These sports seats are pretty nice. They've got this quilted leather with contrast stitching. You've got the RS logo embossed on the seats, a little bit of ventilation on the back. But what I found surprising is these things are manually adjustable. So everything but the lumbar control is manual. Typically, when seats have manual controls, they're these very aggressive, very track-focused bucket seats. It gives you a finer degree of adjustment for dynamic driving. These things, not so aggressive. Like the bolstering is there, but it doesn't quite hold you in that well. I was moving around a lot when I was on a track. It just makes your everyday routines a little more cumbersome. I think Audi had the idea of these seats being sport-focused because this is an RS vehicle. They didn't go all the way. We've got some alcantara inserts that are also RS-specific. We got some alcantara on the gear shift, we've got some alcantara on the door here. These carbon inserts, I wouldn't need to have them. I think they're an additional cost. But we also have nice alcantara lining on the steering wheel. If I had to nit-pick a little bit about the interior, it would have to be that these vents fall a little below the quality of everything else. In other cabins, Audi has actually integrated the air conditioning controls in the vent, so that it gets rid of this whole lower section down here. And you've got these really trick AC controls built into the center of the vents, and that really cleans up the design. So I understand that the standard A3 follows the same design, so they couldn't really reinvent the vents here. But just for an RS vehicle, you expect a little bit more. And the very last thing I'd like to point out are the paddles. The paddles, they're functional, but they're just a little cheap. For as much as you're using them, you'd really like to feel something that's a little bit more substantial. All in all, this is a very well-done cabin. We're going to continue to enjoy the things that Audi puts out. So, guys, that is the Audi RS 3, an exciting new addition to the segment. And some might even say the new leader. If you like this video, be sure to subscribe. And for more information, check out edmunds.com. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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