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The 2019 Audi A1 Looks Good on Paper, but How Good is it in the Real World?

The 2019 Audi A1 Looks Good on Paper, but How Good is it in the Real World?

Could it finally compete with the MINI?

Audi is hot on the trail of the MINI Cooper with its all-new A1 supermini, a radical design departure over the outgoing model, which is a bit unusual. The manufacturer usually very conservatively evolves its models from one generation to the next, but the new A1 is quite revolutionary compared to its predecessor. With that in mind, how does the new A1 fare in the hands of those who have driven it?

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2020 Audi S3

2020 Audi S3

Audi is in the final stages of testing and refining its upcoming A3 hatchback, as well as the hot S3 version of it. It’s not clear when the new S3 may debut, but it will probably be at a major motor show sometime in 2019 - we’ve heard rumors that Audi is ditching the three-door model and will only sell its hatch as either a five-door or sedan.

The model, in true Audi fashion, looks like an evolution of the current model, and the only real giveaway that the vehicle spotted by our spies is the spiced up S3 is the fact that it has those quad exhausts in the back; it also looks as if its fenders are wider than what we saw in previous spy shots of the regular A3, but we can’t say for sure due to the use of psychedelic camo.

Power for the next S3 will most likely come from a development of the same four-cylinder turbo that motivates the current model which may get a modest horsepower increase. Electrification of some kind is not out of the question either, as Audi has announced its commitment to bringing it more models - maybe even performance models.

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Test Drive - An Honest Take on the 2019 Audi RS3 Sportback

Test Drive - An Honest Take on the 2019 Audi RS3 Sportback

This Is Like Chili in Continental #BlackChili Driving Experience

An Audi RS3 Sportback test drive is like the holy grail for hot hatchback lovers. I visited that holy grail of mine, and boy was I overwhelmed by the experience.

As you probably figured out if you read about my time at the Continental #blackchili Driving Experience, I had a unique chance to drive a number of cool cars at an exclusive vlogger/blogger/influencer event organized by Continental AG in Nice. It was called the #blackchili Driving Experience, and I had a chance to drive the Audi RS3 Sportback there on a fantastic route that spanned for 40 or 50 miles. No, that is not enough for a proper test drive, nor was the time spent with the Audi RS3 Sportback enough for a proper assessment of its abilities or its virtues. But it was enough for one thing - to teach me that this hot-hatch is a freaking monster, an animal only a few could tame, and the biggest sleeper I have ever driven.

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2019 Audi A1 Looks Bigger And Better in Paris

2019 Audi A1 Looks Bigger And Better in Paris

The styling looks more aggressive this time around and the feature-list is richer

The first-gen Audi A1 was launched in 2010. Since then, the car has earned a reputation for getting better with tiny tweaks and additions added every now and then. Eight years later, the Audi A1 is back with an all-new iteration. It has improved in every aspect over the 2010 A1. The next-gen Audi A1 was revealed at the Paris Motor Show.

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Mercedes-AMG A35 vs Audi S3

Mercedes-AMG A35 vs Audi S3

Battle of the (mild) hot hatchbacks

When Mercedes-Benz unveiled the fourth-generation A-Class in 2018, it basically dropped a giant anvil on the hatchback market. Fitted with never-before-seen technology and infused with design cues from the bigger sedans inside and out, the new A-Class trumps the BMW 1 Series and the Audi A3 in just about every department. With a handful of models already available, Mercedes-Benz just unveiled the AMG A35. Offered for the first time, it slots above the A250 and below the upcoming AMG A45.

The A35 is Mercedes’ answer to the long-standing Audi S3 and BMW M135i and arrives just when these two hatchbacks are getting a bit long in the tooth. But while the 1 Series is almost out of the market, to be replaced by a front-wheel-drive model, the S3 was facelifted recently and will be around for a few more years. That’s why we decided to throw the S3 into the lion’s den and find out how it compares to the new Mercedes-AMG A35.

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2019 Audi A3

2019 Audi A3

The fourth-generation hatchback is coming in 2019

The Audi A3 was spotted testing on public roads with what appears to be a production-ready exterior. The hatchback is wrapped in camo from front to rear, but the headlamps, the grille, and other details hint at the company’s recent corporate look. The A3 was joined by the higher performance S3 model. While the regular A3 will break cover in 2019 and go on sale for the 2020 model year, the S3 will probably arrive later, most likely for the 2021 model year.

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2019 Audi A1

2019 Audi A1

It’s Sharper, It’s Sportier, It’s Better!

The second-generation Audi A1 is finally here. Initially launched as a small-sized, three-door, entry-level ‘Sportback’ in 2010, Audi then went on to give it five doors in 2011. The A1 has been a successful product for Audi, and is targeted to customers who prefer an “ideal companion for an urban lifestyle." After six years, the second-gen makes its debut, and it definitely looks fresh and sharper than ever.

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Xtomi Imagines the Audi A1 Allroad Quattro, RS1, Clubsport Quattro, and the Avant

Xtomi Imagines the Audi A1 Allroad Quattro, RS1, Clubsport Quattro, and the Avant

How many have a chance for production, though?

Creating hype about a certain product is an inevitability in a tiresome process of developing a brand. I believe that amateur car renderings do play a role in that field and they also provide the car manufacturers with an easy way to sense the pulse of the market and test some ideas.

As it turns out, X-Tomi Design is definitely one of the most respected in this field. Some wait to see his digital works on new cars almost as eagerly as the actual new car photographs. While he really tries to do his best on every new car that comes out, it seems that his imagination went wild with the latest Audi A1. X-Tomi honored us with the cool A1 Allroad Quattro, the exceptional RS1, the really nice Clubsport Quattro and even the Avant.

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The Angry new Audi A1 is Sharper, More Intense and Full of Tech

The Angry new Audi A1 is Sharper, More Intense and Full of Tech

The new Audi A1 may be the angriest small car ever. Not only is it the opposite of cute, adorable or whatever, but its build has undoubtedly been heavily influenced by some of the maddest Audi cars from history. In its press release, Audi mentioned Ur-Quattro and Sport Quattro five times which are clear innuendos about their newest small car. It should be a dynamic masterpiece rooted in the success stories of amazing Audi rally racers from yesteryear. Throwing so many “Quattro” signs around led me to think that they actually launched a version with Quattro AWD, but I was wrong. They did not. At least not yet.

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The New Audi E-Tron Prototype is Roaming around Geneva Right Now!

The New Audi E-Tron Prototype is Roaming around Geneva Right Now!

Use the #etron hashtag if you see it…

Audi is presenting its new e-Tron Prototype (yes, another SUV) at the Geneva Motor Show. This prototype, however, is functional and even roaming the streets of Geneva between 4:30 pm and 6:30 pm local time today, March 5, and tomorrow, March 6. Audi’s latest campaign brings the prototype to the streets, and Audi even says it’ll let you take a seat inside to learn more about it. If you happen to see it roaming the streets, Snap a picture and share it on social media with the #etron hashtag and Audi may just display it on their dedicated homepage: e-Tron.audi.

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2018 Audi RS3 By ABT Sportsline

2018 Audi RS3 By ABT Sportsline

German tuner gives Audi performance sedan a solid makeover

ABT Sportsline is no stranger to working on performance vehicles of German origin and ahead of the 2018 Essen Motor Show, it’s releasing its latest piece de resistance with a kit for the Audi RS3. The kit is available for both sedan and sportback versions of the RS3 and is packing an assortment of different accessories covering the car’s exterior, interior, drivetrain, and suspension.

The result of ABT’s work on the RS3 gives Audi’s performance sedan a whole new personality. Not that it needs one, but there is something to be said for a car like the RS3 that doesn’t get enough attention as it should. The Audi, after all, has to deal with both the BMW M3 and the Mercedes-AMG C63, two of the most established German performance vehicles in the market today. It’s more than capable of holding its own even without the assistance of ABT Sportsline, but if you own an RS3, this king of aftermarket package is one of those offerings that’s going to be hard to turn down. In the end, improvements come in many forms, and in the case of the RS3, there’s enough of them from this program to justify a good long look at the kit.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Audi RS3 by ABT Sportsline

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2018 Audi RS 3 Sportback

2018 Audi RS 3 Sportback

A sleek speed bubble pushing 100 horses per corner

Audi launched production of the A3 compact three-door hatchback in 1996 with the introduction of the original Typ 8L A3 for the European market. Using the same platform as the Volkswagen Golf and Seat Leon, the first A3 offered an inline four-cylinder engine in both gas and diesel trim. In 1999, Audi introduced the sportier S3 model, which was equipped with a range-topping 222-horsepower turbo four-cylinder. In 2003, the second-gen A3 was released, followed by the second-gen S3 in 2006. Finally, in 2011, the RS 3 Sportback was revealed, rocking a five-cylinder 2.5-liter engine and 335 horsepower. The latest-gen RS 3 arrived in 2015 following the third-gen A3’s release in 2012, and now, Audi is introducing a face-lifted model for the hot-to-trot RS hatchback. The latest RS 3 Sportback arrives on the heels of the RS 3 Sedan, which was revealed just last year at the Paris Motor Show. Now, the hatch heads to Geneva for its official public debut, packing even more power under the hood, updated styling, the latest infotainment gear, lots of luxury, and a decent amount of practicality in the rear.

With the new RS 3 Sportback now in the open, Audi’s sport compact offerings are looking solid, with a full complement of four-doors, coupes, drop-tops, and hatchbacks. However, what really makes the new RS 3 Sportback stand out from the crowd is its powerplant. Making the go in this thing is the most powerful production five-cylinder engine in the world. Granted, high-performance five-cylinders aren’t exactly common, but still, it’s a pretty impressive title all the same.

While stateside customers will be able to enjoy the lovely RS 3 Sedan by this summer, the RS 3 Sportback model is unfortunately not slated for U.S. consumption. And that’s a shame, but it doesn’t mean we can’t ogle it from afar. Read on for all the specifics.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Audi RS 3 Sportback.

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2016 - 2017 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron

2016 - 2017 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron

The e-tron gets a few new standard features for 2017

Audi had been touting the electrification of its models for quite a while, but it was all talk until January of 2016 when the brand released the 2016 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron. In typical Audi fashion, the A3 e-tron was nearly identical to its gasoline and diesel drinking brethren. Well, aside from a hidden charging port and a fancy little badge to demonstrate the cars electrified presence on the road, that is. Available with just one engine, a 1.4-liter four-cylinder, and an electric motor, the e-tron delivers just over 200 horsepower and can hit the 60-mph sprint in less than eight seconds. It’s not wildly impressive, but the car does offer around 31 miles of all-electric driving for those of you with a really short daily commute.

Another cool feature about the e-tron is Audi’s collaboration with SunPower. Through SunPower, Audi is able to offer charging via solar panels at your home. Of course, this probably won’t be cheap, but if don’t mind paying for the technology, it could save you a little money in the long run. Plus, you know, it’s good for the environment too.

For 2017, the A3 e-tron carries over unchanged for the most part. It does take on a couple of small updates, and there are some new options available that really add to the overall luxuriousness of the car. Pricing for the 2017 model year has also changed a bit, but nothing too drastic. With that said, let’s take a look at the 2016 – 2017 Audi A3 e-tron and talk about the minor changes that come with the 2017 model year.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 – 2017 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron.

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2016 Audi S1 by B&B Automobiltechnik

2016 Audi S1 by B&B Automobiltechnik

As a fan and champion of everything related to hot hatchbacks, I often find myself giggling every time an aftermarket tuner presents a tuning program for a hot hatch. I’m not ashamed to admit it, but my reaction was no different when B&B Automobiltechnik presented its latest tuning exploit, a program for the Audi S1 that heavily focuses on the engine.

This is a good one, especially for those who aren’t satisfied with the S1’s standard output of 231 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. B&B certainly addressed that by presenting a five-stage engine upgrade program that helps the Audi pocket rocket increase its output to as much as 380 horsepower and 398 pound-feet of torque.

There’s plenty to digest here, not the least of which is the differences between the five-stage engine upgrade. In addition to that, B&B is also offering chassis and suspension improvements and a new set of 18-inch wheels that promises to add some extra jolt of character into the car.

The versatility of the program is evident and B&B deserves credit for that. But the kit also its downside, which I will address shortly. Let’s just say that the five-stage engine upgrade may be overwhelming on the surface, but does one really differentiate greatly from the next upgrade, or could B&B have made it simpler for everyone by leaving more room for distinction among the programs?

Continue after the jump to read the full review.

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2016 Audi RS3 8V By B&B Automobiltechnik

2016 Audi RS3 8V By B&B Automobiltechnik

German tuner gives RS3 owners 550 reasons to get its tuning program

In a market teeming with notable hot hatchbacks, the Audi RS3 stands as one of the most powerful in the segment. But, even with that kind of status, a car like the RS3 is more than capable of accommodating more power. That’s one of the reasons why aftermarket tuners like B&B Automobiltechnik are around. The German tuner has presented a new tuning program for the Audi RS3, one that includes a whopping four-stage engine kit that helps bring the output of the hot hatch’s 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine to a mouth-watering 550 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque.

Needless to say, that kind of power from a car with the stature of the RS3 is impressive. B&B even added a series of upgrades to other parts of the hot hatchback to complement the work it put into the turbocharged five-banger. The full kit also includes modifications to the suspension, brakes, and a new set of wheels that provide a nice visual upgrade and complements all the performance improvements made to the hatchback.

There have been a lot of tuners that have built tuning programs for the RS3 in recent months, but I don’t think any of these tuners have anything approaching the versatility and variety of what B&B Automobiltechnik has to offer. Think those three-stage engine kits are plentiful enough? Apparently, there not even enough for B&B.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.

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2016 Audi RS3 by Oettinger

2016 Audi RS3 by Oettinger

Prepare to get blown away with this massive engine kit from the German tuner

The Audi RS3 Sportback has only been on the market since 2010 and even in those six years, a two-year gap from 2012 to 2014 saw the RS3 relegated into the sidelines. Quite an interesting life, wouldn’t you say? None of that really matters now because the RS3 Sportback is once again on the market and in yet another twist, it has actually become a tuning favorite by some of the most notable aftermarket tuners in the business.

We’ve seen what the likes of MTM and MR Racing have done to the RS3 so now, we cede the stage to Oettinger, another of the one of the many German tuners that have made its mark in the tuning biz with carefully planned kits like the one it has for the Audi wagon.

As you may expect, Oettinger didn’t pull any punches with this program. Words like “substantial” and “supercar-like” have been thrown out to describe what the German tuner was able to do for the RS3. I’m not going to douse those descriptions with water because once you see what Oettinger was able to do to the powerful wagon, you might be inclined to agree, even if doing so means you’re accepting the fact that this particular kit was developed strictly for the RS3’s 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine, hence the absence of any exterior and interior upgrades.

So the question here is this: is the program still worth it if it has no cosmetic or aerodynamic upgrades? I suppose that’ll depend on your priorities, but in any event, this particular kit is definitely not for the weak of heart.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.

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2016 Audi RS3 By MR Racing

2016 Audi RS3 By MR Racing

German automaker’s popular hot hatch gets another tuning program

Audi’s award-winning 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine has earned another distinction among the list of accolades it has already received. It has become a favorite among aftermarket companies because of the enormous tuning potential it has displayed. One car that has benefitted from this is the RS3 Sportback, the high-performance variant of Audi’s A3 lineup.

You only need to take a look back at some of the recent programs for the RS3 to understand why the model has become a hit to a lot of tuners. Over the past year, companies like ABT Sportsline and MTM have built kits for the car, and now, MR Racing is joining in on the fun with its own program for the RS3.

This program is packed with modifications, especially on the cosmetic and performance fronts. Sure, there are no aero kits to speak of, but MR Racing made up for that by giving the hot hatch a look that inspires both confidence and aggressiveness. More importantly, the engine upgrades are impressive, not because of the immense power increases they provide, but because they’re varied enough to give customers a chance to choose the right amount of power they’d like to have on their RS3s. And because the engine is considered the standard-bearer for all engines in the 2.0-liter to 2.5-liter category, it makes it easier for MR Racing to come up with modifications that suits a wide range of customers.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.

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2017 Audi S3

2017 Audi S3

Audi performance-oriented hatch gets A4-inspired styling and new premium features

2015 brought us many new models from Audi, including redesigned versions of the A4, Q7, and R8, and it seems that 2016 will also be packed with new releases from the four-ringed automaker. Having already launched the redesigned R8 Spyder at the 2016 New York Auto Show, Audi took the wraps of the facelifted A3 family, which includes a hatchback, sedan, and cabriolet and their respective performance-oriented versions.

In this article we will focus on the hatchback version of the S3, which is available in both three- and five-door body styles.

Like the rest of the A3 family, the S3 Sportback gained a redesigned front fascia that includes Audi’s new styling language, an updated rear end, enhanced technology, and a slightly more powerful drivetrain. In other words, we’re dealing with a regular facelift created with one thought in mind: keep the car fresh until the next-generation model arrives.

The bad news is that the S3 Sportback won’t cross the pond to the U.S. for now, where Audi doesn’t sell the A3 hatch or any of its derivatives. However, if you’re on the market for a performance-oriented compact Audi will be happy to sell you the S3 sedan or S3 convertible. If a hatchback is what you need, you will have to look somewhere else. Be that as it may, let’s have a closer look at the S3 Sportback and find out how the new compact stacks up against other performance hatchbacks.

Updated 04/07/2016: Audi dropped the official details on the revised A3 family, including the 2017 S3 three- and five-doors hatchback versions.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Audi S3.

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2017 Audi A3 Hatchback

2017 Audi A3 Hatchback

Tech and safety features headline Audi’s mid-cycle refresh for the A3 Sportback

Audi has released the updated 2017 A3 and all its derivatives, including the sedan, cabriolet, three-door, and Sportback. This mid-cycle refresh concentrates on new driver assistance systems, Audi’s virtual cockpit, new powertrain options, and a new exterior look.

The A3 dates back to 1996 when it debuted as a three-door hatchback. It was built on Volkswagen’s A platform, meaning its shared plenty of parts with the VW Golf. The same can be said today, as the A3 shared much of its platform with the current Golf, itself getting a refresh for 2017.

We’ve been following the development of the 2017 Audi A3 for some time now, and have plenty of spy shots to show for it. It was back in January 2016 when we last saw the A3 in development, trudging over show-covered roads in Europe. The fleet of A3 test cars included the sedan, convertible, and Sportback versions. Now with its face clearly visible and all the details made public, we can take a close look at what Audi has changed.

Updated 04/06/2016: Audi has released details and photos of the 2017 A3, including the Sportback and hatchback versions.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Audi A3 Hatchback.

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