Audi South Africa tells CARmag.co.za both the new A3 Sportback and A3 Sedan are scheduled to arrive locally in the second quarter of 2021.
The second generation of the A3 Sedan is about 40 mm longer than the original (measuring 4 500 mm nose to tail, which makes it around 150 mm longer than the A3 Sportback), while its wheelbase is unchanged. The saloon’s width has been increased by 20 mm to 1 820 mm, while the newcomer interestingly stands some 10 mm taller than its forebear at 1 430 mm.
Audi says the latter increase has resulted in extra headroom, with an additional 20 mm of noggin space on offer in the front (the driver’s seat has been lowered, too). At a claimed 425 litres, the sedan’s luggage capacity matches that of the original.
In Europe at launch, the new A3 Sedan will be available with a choice of two TFSI powertrains and one TDI engine. The A3 35 TFSI will employ a turbocharged 1,5-litre petrol engine with 110 kW and offered with either a “newly developed” six-speed manual gearbox or a seven-speed S tronic transmission.
Fitted with the self-shifting cog-swapper, the A3 Sedan features a 48 V mild-hybrid system that recovers energy during deceleration and supports the combustion engine with up to 50 N.m “when driving off and accelerating from low engine speeds”. It furthermore allows the A3 Sedan to coast with the engine switched off in certain scenarios.
The 2,0-litre TDI, meanwhile, also offers 110 kW and employs a seven-speed S tronic transmission, with gear shifts performed via a new compact lever using shift-by-wire technology.
Audi says the new A3 Sedan’s suspension has been tuned to be “a touch more precise” than in its predecessor. As an alternative to the standard arrangement, the company will offer a sport suspension and a suspension with controlled dampers.
The Ingolstadt-based firm says the new four-door A3 boasts a Cd value of 0,25 (model dependent, of course), making it slipperier through the air than the original. There’s also a controllable cooling-air inlet with two electrically actuated louver modules behind the grille.
Inside, the central MMI touch display is angled slightly toward the driver and features a 10,1-inch diagonal. The 10,25-inch instrument cluster, meanwhile, is digital (while a 12,3-inch version is also offered, as is a head-up display). The flagship infotainment system is MMI Navigation Plus, which uses the Volkswagen Group’s latest MIB3 arrangement.
While Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality is included, Audi says the A3 Sedan can also be locked and unlocked (and even started) via an Android smartphone with the Audi connect key.
See Full Audi A3 Cabriolet price and specs here