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By 22 October 2013 | Categories: news

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Audi South Africa has launched the third-generation S3 3-door hot hatch locally. Distinguishing this premium compact car from a regular A3 are a number of exterior styling cues that include 18" 5-parallel-spoke design cast aluminium alloy wheels, Xenon Plus headlights, S3 Sport seats, a multifunction sports steering wheel with large shift paddles, and S3 instrumentation in grey with a turbo-boost indicator.

Just in case all these were not enough, you also get a plethora of S3 logos and badges strategically placed all around the vehicle to inform passers-by to the sporty nature of this hot hatch.

A sportier ride than normal is guaranteed via features such as Audi’s S sports suspension and a progressive steering system with dynamic ratio to firm up the steering feel whilst remaining accurate, quick and direct.

Audi, local news, South Africa, Audi A3 range, Audi S3, sportscar, hot hatch, motoring news, car news

Under the bonnet

Beneath the bonnet of the S3 resides a 2.0 TFSI engine that churns out an impressive 380 Nm of torque between 1800 and 5500 RPM as well as 206 kW at 5500 RPM, with the high-revving powerplant only hitting the redline at 6800 RPM.

The S3 3-door is available locally with either a six-speed manual or a seven-speed S tronic transmission. This hot hatch rockets to 100 km/h from standstill in just 4.8 seconds when equipped with the S tronic (5.2 seconds for the manual version). Audi electronically limits the top speed to a still illegal 250 km/h.

Despite the sporty nature of this vehicle, drivers with more reserved right feet are able to get a very decent combined-cycle (town and highway driving) fuel usage figure of 6.9 litres per 100 km in the S tronic version and 7 litres per 100 km in the manual iteration.

Audi, local news, South Africa, Audi A3 range, Audi S3, sportscar, hot hatch, motoring news, car news

To the point

Audi newest S3 3-door is now available in South Africa at R457 500 for the S3 hatch 2.0T FSI quattro manual and R 474 500 for the S3 hatch 2.0T FSI quattro S tronic. These prices includes a 5 year or 100 000 km Audi Freeway Plan as standard.

During November, the 5-door version of the S3, dubbed the S3 Sportback, will be locally available, with pricing and specification for this model being revealed closer to its introduction.

The Audi S3 has enjoyed a successful history in the South African market having sold 1944 units since its introduction in 2000. This sales success is likely to continue with the latest iteration, as local buyers compete against rivals like the VW Golf GTI, BMW M135i and Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG in robot to robot sprint battles.  

In other motoring related news, the nine 2014 WesBank/South African Guild of Motoring Journalist Car of the Year finalists have recently been announced at the 2013 Johannesburg International Motor Show

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