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Pushing to the limit! Audi RS 3 Sedan driven

2017-10-04 07:00

Image: Warren Wilson

Sean Parker

Cape Town - Speed. That's the first thing that strikes you about the Audi RS 3 Sedan. Yes, performance car fans, Ingolstadt has fitted its massively-powerful 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine into a sedan body. 

Power is up from 270kW to 294kW with torque pegged at 480Nm. All-wheel drive is standard fare,  as is with all fast Audis. 

Capable of reaching 100km/h in under 4 seconds

The RS 3 sedan tips the scales at 1510kg. It has a claimed 0-100kmh of 4.1 seconds, however a fellow motoring journalist tested a unit in Johannesburg and it sprinted to 100km/h from standstill in 3.83 seconds. 

While we had it on test, it certainly felt capable of making those astonishing numbers a reality, there's just so much traction. 

It's a seriously quick car that shouldn't be underestimated. The engine is not devoid of lag, but the mountain of torque is served up like a Rafael Nadal forehand. 

Decked in 'Mythos Black', the RS 3 has a standard price of R925 500. However, our test unit had a plethora of options that increased its price tag to a hefty R1 021 550. 

The RS 3 sedan starts out as a bog standard A3, but the finished product is a car with prodigious talent. Its 25mm lower than a normal A3 and has changes to its dampers, and springs for a sportier feel. 

Inside, expect a high-grade quality cabin with optional sports seats (R9000) and what Audi calls 'in lay carbon' for R11 150 which gives the interior a race car-type feel.

There are RS logos festooned on the seats, steering and gear lever. Another cool option are the red brake calipers which will set you back R4180 but are oh so cool to look at.  

View all the extras on the test car here.  

Launch control

The manner in which the power is transferred via the all-wheel drive system to the road is seamless. That's evident by the brutal launch control that we tested, you can watch the video below. 

An alcantara trimmed steering wheel is your office as you hold onto the brutal force the RS 3 emits. In its sportiest 'dynamic' setting, the RS 3 feels lithe in its approach, accelerating towards the horizon with relentless urge not felt in a compact sedan. 

This car is all about performance, it's an intoxicating experience that bleeds into the dynamic abilities of a brand which has lived in the shadow of performance rear-driven models from Munich. 

The RS 3 punishes corners, promising and delivering Spiderman-like levels of grip that urges the driver to push the limits. 

The tangibility of the quattro system sending torque towards the RS 3's rear makes it a fun car to push on a twisty section of tarmac. It sounds absolutely marvelous thanks to all the pops and bangs emitted from its two oval exhaust tips. 

The tweaks to the dampers and springs coupled to have definitely turned the RS 3 into a more dynamic dare we say it 'driver's car' than the Sportback model. 

The RS 3 will leave you wondering why a car should be that fast and at the same time urge you to go faster and reach a limit you might not have thought was possible. 

They've managed to blend pace, appeal, four doors and a well-made cabin into a car that's not as soulless as some of its RS family members have turned out to be in the past (bar the B7 RS 4 and current-gen R8). 

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