Audi's handsome A3 sedan not here until next year

Audi’s next-generation compact four-door A3 sedan is a looker, but it isn’t due to arrive until the first half of next year.

2021 Audi A3 sedan
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Audi has released the first batch of images of its handsome new A3 sedan, which grafts a more business-like rump to the sharp-looking form of the 2020 Audi A3 Sportback that made its debut in March this year.

Besides the boot lid, the A3 sedan measures in at 15cm longer than its Sportback brother. Compared to the outgoing A3 sedan, the new one is also 4cm longer overall, 2cm wider and has slightly more headroom and elbow room inside.

The 425-litre boot capacity is the same, too, giving it a greater seats-up volume than the hatchback.

All of its sheet metal forward of the B-pillar is shared with the hatch, with pumped-up quarter panels at each corner giving the car a profoundly athletic look.

The rear door skins, meanwhile, feature a different contour to emphasise the sedan’s length. With the base models looking this fat, the high-performance S3 and RS3 sedans should look properly bonkers.

Audi A3 sedan equipment

Expect everything that’s available on the hatch to also be on the A3 sedan’s spec sheet, including things like advanced Matrix LED headlamps on high-grade A3s, and a 10.25-inch all-electronic ‘virtual cockpit’ digital dash on every variant – except those with the top-of-the-range virtual cockpit, which sees an even bigger 12.3-inch screen sit behind the steering wheel.

2021 Audi A3 SedanCompared to the current A3’s antiquated motorised infotainment screen, the new A3 sedan features a fixed 10.1-inch touchscreen display set into its dashboard, with MMI controls on the console that feature handwriting detection.

Opt for the top-spec MMI Navigation plus infotainment system and you get an in-car computer that’s ten times faster than the current A3’s, and features an integrated high-speed wireless internet capability and an in-car wi-fi hotspot.

That ties into the new suite of car-to-X technologies that Audi will introduce with the A3, which sees vehicle data transmitted to the cloud to help other vehicles and vice versa.

Smartphone mirroring via Android Auto and Apple CarPlay will also be built-in to the A3’s infotainment suite.

2021 Audi A3 Sedan
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Audi A3 sedan mechanical specs

Again, there’s going to be a lot of crossover with the hatchback when it comes to what’s under the bonnet.

For now, Audi has only confirmed two engines and three powertrains at launch for the Euro-market A3 sedan, versus five for the A3 Sportback.

These are a 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol with 110kW, which is backed by either a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, and which burns a claimed 4.9L/100km with the help of cylinder deactivation and a 48-volt mild hybrid system.

2021 Audi A3 Sedan
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A 2.0-litre turbo diesel is the other engine option, also making 110kW and consuming a claimed 3.9L/100km on the combined cycle, but it's available solely with the seven-speed dual-clutch auto.

For now, both engines take drive to the front wheels only – AWD quattro variants will follow.

Australia

By the time we see the A3 sedan arrive in local showrooms, there should be more powertrain options to speak of.

It’s not scheduled to land in Australia until sometime in the first half of 2021, with local prices and specifications still to be announced.

2021 Audi A3 Sedan
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