That question can be answered with one word: FUN. With a sonorous 401-horsepower five-cylinder engine, a compact footprint and all-wheel drive, the Audi RS 3 is a potent little performer. It's the high-performance variant of the A3 small sedan and bookends the midrange S3. The RS 3 was just redesigned for the 2022 model year, so we don't expect any big changes for 2024, but some spy shots of a prototype hint that a slightly reworked grille and some other exterior styling updates may be in development.
The newly redesigned BMW M2 represents the most direct rival to the RS 3 and it enjoys a 52-hp advantage. The Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 isn't quite as raucous as the RS 3 or M2, favoring luxury and refinement instead.