Geneva 2011: Audi A3 Concept Packs 408 Horsepower, Previews Production Model

Audi has officially unveiled its new A3 concept sedan at the Geneva motor show, teasing us with a new, attractive, entry-level AWD four-door to complement its A3 lineup and put Mercedes' small cars in the closet. The concept measures 4.44 meters long, 1.84 meters wide, and 1.39 meters high, and makes use of a lot of CFRP.

That carbon fiber-reinforced plastic finds its way into the grille, front air intakes, 20-inch wheels, side mirrors, and rear diffuser, while aluminum highlights can be found inside and out.

Under the hood are a 2.5-liter turbocharged 5-cylinder (300 kW / 408 horsepower ; 500 Nm / 369 lb-ft) and 7-speed S tronic transmission which help hurl the car to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.1 seconds on its way to a limited top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph). Efficiency figures go like this: 9.1 liters/100 km (25.85 US mpg), with 212 grams CO2 / km (341.18 g/mile) in emissions.

Chassis improvements are derived from Audi's RS3 pocket rocket, using McPherson struts and a lot of aluminum up front and a four-link setup in back with steel control arms.

Inside the light, conservative interior are four sports seats, a customizable information display between the speedo and tach housed behind the sporty steering wheel, and reportedly plenty of space due to a longest-in-class wheelbase of 2.63 meters. The A3 concept sedan also has 410 liters / 14.48 cubic feet of trunk storage capacity.

The backs of the front seats have one really neat feature for fans of Steve Jobs: iPad holders. After all, this car is a wireless hot spot and surfing the internet on your iPhone is so 2009. Between those front buckets reside the knob and touchpad for the MMI multimedia system, which controls the snazzy screen that raises out of the top of the dashboard.

Scroll on down for live pics, while more official info should be out later this year.

By Phil Alex


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