German reserve flies out the window as Audi introduces 525bhp A3

When you buy a mid-sized German saloon there are a few things you expect: a reasonable amount of technology, good build quality and a solid driving experience.

Chances are, you’ll get all that in the new A3 Clubsport Quattro, but you’ll also get get a 525bhp engine capable of tearing your face off.

Built as a concept show car for the Wörthersee Meeting in Reifnitz (Kärnten), taking place from from 28 to 31 May, the car is based on the S3 sedan and features a power-to-weight ratio of 2.9 kilograms (6.4 lb)/hp as well as a 0 to 100 km/h speed of 3.6 seconds and a top speed of 310 km/h.

In order to make those kinds of figures possible, Audi made significant changes to the S3, including the addition of a supercharger with up to 1.5 bar of relative boost pressure and a modified intercooler.

There’s also a seven speed gearbox (the seventh gear is meant to save on fuel consumption) as well as an electronic stabilisation control system which can be partly or completely deactivated.

Despite being associated with a racing event, Audi says that the A3 Clubsport Quattro can seat four comfortably (or as comfortably as four people in racing seats can ever be at any rate). The footrest and pedals meanwhile are made of stainless steel and two open-worked bars form the handles for the door openers.

Given what its built for, it shouldn’t be all that surprising that there isn’t all that much consumer-facing technology in the A3 Clubsport Quattro. The fact that Audi’s managed to make what’s ostensibly a standard four door saloon weigh around 1 500kg is pretty damn impressive.



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