Audi S3 2022 Review

We drive the Audi S3 on its launch

Audi S3 – Audi is hoping to reinvigorate its overall sales in general and its A3 passenger car sales in particular with the release of new models.

Audi S3The A3 range includes the hot hero car version; the S3

The new S3 which comes with power train set up for two body shapes: a sedan and a Sportback.

With some features that are now standard rather than being part of option packs and prices starting at $70,700, Audi is pitching at premium features and more performance with less emphasis on optional extras.

The A3 is classified in Australia as a small car along with the Mercedes A and B class, the BMW 1 and 2 series and the Mini Clubman

Audi S3 profile

What is the S3 Like outside?

Both models have the same, stronger, more muscular front design with a wide single frame, rhombus-patterned grille with aluminium inlays, large air inlets allow for greater airflow to cool the engine. The new S3 comes standard with Matrix LED headlights.

Similarly, on the sides there is a strong crease and panel sculpture low down on the doors above the sill while the roof line, particularly on the Sportsback, has a gentle slope that adds character to the look.

But it is the sedan that has the better overall flowing appearance, with the Sportback looking like a typical hatchback at the rear.

The 19-inch Audi Sport alloy wheels in a matte titanium finish are standard, with the option to switch to 5-double-spoke edge style in anthracite black for an additional $300.  For a car of this size it gives a very sporty balance helped by the gloss-red brake callipers clamping to 340mm ventilated rotors at the front-end and 312mm discs at the rear.

A total of eight paint colours are available, including colours with names befitting a stand out vehicle such as Python Yellow and Turbo Blue.

Audi S3 driver instruments

What’s the S3 like inside?

The interior certainly has a feel of quality and great functionality with the digital screens and the information they provide being one of the strongest points.

The centre infotaiment screen is a 10.1-inch MMI touch display, with 10x more computing power than its predecessor. This enables voice control with natural speech recognition, 3D map display including places of interest and city models, and MMI search: free-text search with intelligent destination suggestions.

The new S3 has the addition of electric heated front seats with four-way lumber support, a folding rear seat backrest (40:20:40), and a 325L boot capacity. This extends to a 1,145L volume for the Sportback variant with the rear seats folded down.

The lowered seat position of the driver allows for greater headroom and a more sports car feel.

Audi S3 ENGINE

What Engine and Transmission does the Audi  have?

The S3 has a 2-litre, four cylinder turbo charged petrol engine producing 228 kW of power and 400 Nm of torque, the all-new S3 boasts a powerhouse 2.0 TFSI engine. This is an additional +15kW of power and +20Nm of torque from its 2019 predecessor and brings the new S3 up to speed with equivalent performance of that in Europe.

The four-cylinder petrol engine delivers maximum torque across a broad range of between 2,000 and 5,450 rpm, while the rated power output comes in at the high end of 5,500 remaining constant up to 6,500 rpm.

It accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.8 seconds.

Both models have a 7- speed S tronic transmission and are all-wheel-drive Suspension

The all-new S3 models sit 15mm closer to the road than their A3 counterpart, with S sport suspension with adaptive damper control included as standard.

Four-link rear axle and progressive steering come as standard, with central dynamic handling control to maximise the full potential of quattro drive system.

The driver can use the system to vary not only the dampers, the quattro drive, and the engine sound, but also the characteristics of the steering and throttle response, as well as the switch points of the S tronic. Five profiles are available: efficiency, comfort, auto, dynamic, and individual.

Audi S3

Features

Audi connect plus Navigation & Infotainment services including:

  • Online traffic information with hazard alert
  • Destination entry via myAudi or Google Maps
  • Parking information
  • Weather
  • Fuel prices
  • Google Services

Audi connect plus Security & Assistance services including:

  • Car finder with remote signal
  • Remote lock & unlock
  • Emergency call
  • Online roadside assistance
  • Audi virtual cockpit plus – fully digital configurable instrument cluster with 12.3-inch high resolution colour display including S specific functions
  • Bang & Olufsen 3D Premium Sound System – surround sound reproduction via 15 high-performance loudspeakers including subwoofer; 16-channel amplifier with a total output of 680 watts. Exclusive speaker covers with aluminium applications

Audi S3 rear seats

Safety Assistance Systems

  • Adaptive cruise assist with Stop&Go, traffic jam assist and emergency assist
  • Lane departure warning – when activated, helps the driver stay in the lane by gentle corrective steering interventions and through steering vibration2
  • Park assist – helps to steer the vehicle into a parallel or perpendicular parking
  • Parking system plus, front and rear
  • Light and rain sensor – automatic control of lights-on function and windscreen wipers
  • Rear view camera system

One disappointing point of the S3 system was that it showed you the existing classified speed limit as coded into Google maps. It does not have a system of reading local speed limits that may vary due to road words etc.

Audi S3 driving

Driving Impression

We drove the new S3 in Hobart and surrounding districts down through the Huon Valley.

Within Hobart, the S3 is an easy urban car to drive with even half throttle enough to move up and find a gap to change lane.

Leaving the city, we encounter at least two sets of traffic lights and within 10 minutes we were driving through natural forest on a very tight and twisty road with corners marked at low as 25km/hr. So without breaking the speed limit there was amble opportunity to appreciate the S3’s setup.

It performed with crisp precision and snappy performance. Using the paddles with amble gears as you went from a relatively straight section of road down into a very tight corner, is one of the delights of driving a car like this.

The low-profile tyres added some road noise but not excessively and the overall comfort level was good even for touring on some less than perfect secondary arterials.

The precise steering, solid road feel and great braking helped give confidence on roads that at times lacked edge line-marking.

As we travelled through the picturesque townships, occasionally stopping at a pedestrian crossing or for turning traffic, I particularly appreciated the Google Aerial photography that could be portrayed on the screen. It immediately gave you some perspective of the nature of the township that you don’t get by just going through the centre on the main road.

The sound from the exhaust pipes added to a feeling of powerful control.

On such twisting roads, with edge line markings coming and going and difficult to keep track of on very tight corners, the lane departure warning system would, at times, indicate that it was not detecting the situation adequately and would therefore not give you any warnings. It was not a problem if the driver gives the situation their full attention but it is something that you could not depend on.

Audi S3 front seats

Some other Audi S3 articles

Pricing

S3 Sportback 228kW $70,700
S3 Sedan 228kW $73,200

*MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options. RDAP means Recommended Drive Away Price (without options but including all other charges)

Premium plus limited package ($2,800 Sportback| $3,590 Sedan)

  • Panoramic glass sunroof
  • Head-up display
  • Memory function for the driver seat
  • Memory function for the exterior mirrors

What is good?

What is not so good?

  • Precise, confident handling
  • Engine performance
  • Good Human/Machine interface including Google Maps
  • Head-up display is only an option and comes in a package that includes a sunroof which may not be desirable
  • Does not detect temporary speed zones
  • Price including the need for an option package

Summary

A very good sports performance package with prestige that comes at a bit of a price.

Ideal for the person who enjoys driving a car with performance and handling

Audi S3 rear

Audi S3 Details

Vehicle Variant:

Audi S3 Sportback/Sedan

Drivetrain: 1,984cc 4-cylinder petrol with direct fuel injection, turbo-charging

7-Speed Tiptronic Gearbox

Power: 228kW @ 5,450-6,500 rpm
Torque: 400 Nm @ 2,000-5,450 rpm
Max Speed: 250 km/h (Limited)
Acceleration: 0-100km/h in 4.8 secs
Fuel Economy: 7.4/7.3 Litres per 100km
CO2 emissions (gms per km) 170/166
Fuel Tank Capacity 55 litres
Weight: From 1,500 kgs
Towing Capacity: N/A
Service Plans: 5 Years/ $2,580
Warranty: 5 Years
MLP* $70,700/$73,200

*MLP Includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of options. Some features mentioned in the article are options. RDAP means Recommended Drive Away Price (without options but including all other charges)

About David Brown 580 Articles
David’s boyhood passion for motor cars did not immediately lead to a professional role in the motor industry. A qualified Civil Engineer he specialised in traffic engineering and transport planning. What followed were various positions including being seconded to a government think-tank for the planning of transport firstly in Sydney and then for the whole of NSW. After working with the NRMA and as a consultant he moved to being an independent writer and commentator on the broader areas of transport and the more specific areas of the cars we drive. His half hour motoring program “Overdrive” has been described as an “informed, humorous and irreverent look at motoring and transport from Australia and overseas”. It is heard on 22 stations across Australia. He does weekly interviews with several ABC radio stations and is also heard on commercial radio in Sydney. David has written for metropolitan and regional newspapers and has presented regular segments on metropolitan and regional television stations. David is also a contributor for AnyAuto