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2022 Audi RS 3

2022 Audi RS 3 Priced at $59,995; We Configure One

A little Audi that packs a big punch

  • The redesigned RS 3 comes out this summer.
  • 401-hp inline five-cylinder engine sounds great.
  • Audi USA's consumer configurator for the RS 3 is now live.

In a world where nearly every automaker stopped making cool one-off performance car engines, and instead just dials up the turbo boost to 11, Audi has a big "how do you like them five apples?!" for its new 2022 RS 3. (I hope you'll read this out loud with your impersonation of the guy who does the voice over for YouTube's Honest Trailers.) And now we've got an official launch date and price for the U.S.-bound RS 3.

Pricing in America starts a latte short of $60,000

The RS 3 is already on sale in Europe, and it's taking its sweet time getting here. But now we finally know how much it's going to cost: $59,995, including destination. That's similar to what you'd pay to get a base Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing, Ford Mustang Mach 1 or Mercedes-AMG CLA 45. BMW's upcoming next-generation M2 coupe will presumably be in the same ballpark.

Audi says the RS 3 sedan will arrive at dealers this summer. In the meantime, you'll just have to pass the time by following Europeans on Instagram getting their shiny new RS 3s. Try not to let the jealousy seep in too much.

2022 Audi RS 3

The rousing trumpet of five cylinders

The redesigned 2022 Audi RS 3 is carrying on the car's tradition of having a turbocharged inline five-cylinder engine that powers all four wheels. The all-wheel-drive system for this year's RS 3 also has a new torque-vectoring rear differential that imbues the car with greater agility when powering out of turns. There's also a Torque Rear mode, which can shunt all torque through one rear wheel — perfect for inducing tail-happy oversteer drifts on a racetrack. That's pretty neat for an AWD car.

Other than the Audi TT RS, which heads out to pasture after 2022, this is the only car you buy in the U.S. with a five-cylinder engine. It makes a robust 401 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque.

An output of 401 hp isn't all that special these days, but it does help the RS 3 sprint from 0 to 60 mph in an advertised 3.8 seconds. So, yeah, it's quick. And, it sounds super cool. It's got a kind of mini V10-like warble that's unlike anything else.

2022 Audi RS 3

Go configure one now on Audiusa.com

Pleasingly, Audi will now let you configure an RS 3 for the U.S. market. Audi has also seemed to have given the car more standard features than the European models. Adaptive suspension dampers, adaptive cruise control and a blacked-out grille, for example, are standard for the U.S. but are optional if you build one on the Audi UK site. Anyway, here's what I came up with:

Paint: Daytona Gray pearl ($595)

Packages:

  • Black Optic Plus (black-painted wheels, badges and roof; $750)
  • Audi Side Assist (blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert; $350)
  • RS sport exhaust ($1,000)

Final price: $62,690

Black wheels (the only wheel color offered) often look goofy to me on brightly painted cars, so that's why I went with the gray. It's a stealthy look that's not overdone.

There were options I left off, such as the $2,750 RS Technology package (tech stuff and premium audio) and the $5,500 Dynamic Plus package (carbon-ceramic front brakes, primarily), but I was aiming to keep it reasonably priced. There could be a bargain grab in ordering the optional Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R semi-slick tires, however. Only $450! Let me know how long they last on your car after liberally using the Torque Rear mode.

Edmunds says

We've had info on the 2022 RS 3 since late in 2021, but there were questions on what the U.S. version would be like. Now we know, and it's looking like the RS 3 is going to be an intriguing pick for a performance sedan.