Audi RS3 Plus May Not Happen
Despite certain rumors suggesting otherwise, and Mercedes-AMG reportedly upgrading the A45 AMG to deliver over 400 horsepower in the facelifted model from 2015, Audi doesn’t seem too keen on offering a more powerful version of the recently unveiled 2015 RS3 hot-hatch. Top Gear recently sat down with the Manager of Technical Development at Quattro GmbH, Stefan Reil, and discussed the topic of an Audi RS3 Plus version, which would mirror the old R8 V10 Plus and the upcoming 2017 TT RS Plus in terms of horsepower credentials.
"We are at the limit of the size of the turbocharger. We have durability limits and our warranties to consider, which we learn from summer and winter testing." said Reil when asked about the possibility of a hardcore RS3 Plus. When questioned about 400+ horsepower versions of the previous RS3, made by aftermarket tuners, he said: "Yes, but the tuning companies do not have to comply with our durability and service limits." Top Gear mentioned the 525-horsepower A3 Clubsport Quattro Concept from 2014, but Reil responded by saying that "the turbo in that car was one-and-a-half times bigger than the one in the new RS3."
In other words, an RS3 with more than 400 horsepower from the factory is currently a no-go, despite Reil not officially denying such a model. On the other hand, German carmakers have denied a "horsepower war" with almost every new model generation, but their newest products keep contradicting them.
Continue reading to learn more about the Audi RS3 Plus.
Why it matters
We already know that a new Audi TT RS Plus is coming that will have at least 400 horsepower, and considering that the current RS3 is based on the same MQB platform and is fitted with a version of the same turbocharged, 2.5-liter, inline-five cylinder engine, it’s not exactly a stretch to think about an RS3 Plus.
Especially since the RS3’s arch-enemy, the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG, is expected to outpower it when the 2016 mid-cycle A-Class facelift arrives. Not only that, but there are rumors that the facelifted A45 AMG may even get an S-Model version, which would definitely run circles around the Audi in terms of horsepower and performance. With that in mind, I think that Quattro’s Stefan Reil simply tries to protect the regular RS3’s image when playing down a Plus version, and such a model will probably appear in 3-4 years time.
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