Every premium brand in our country is targeting a new type of audience and trying to build a new market segment in India, we have seen that from the premium brands like Mercedes Benz, BMW and Volvo who has already launched their entry level offerings in the Indian market but still Audi has not launched anything in this market segment yet. Mercedes Benz is leading this segment with two of their most recent launches the A Class and B class hatchbacks recently they even launched special edition of those two hatches in order to celebrate their first anniversary in the Indian market . All these entry vehicles from the premium brands are priced well under the 30 lakh rupees price bracket. BMW too has launched their X1 earlier in the year 2010 previous year they launched the launched their entry level hatch 1 series. Then it was turn of the Swedish premium car manufacturing brand Volvo, who also recently launched the V40 Cross Country, which too has a blend of a hatchback along with a SUV or in other words a crossover. So now the German luxury car manufacturing brand Audi will enter this race with the new A3 saloon to give the other premium car manufacturers tough competition.

The A3 saloon has been offered with many engine options in the International market but India most probably will be getting two engines as an option. The first and the most the most powerful engine that Audi placed under the hood of their entry level sedan A3, is a 1.8TFSI Petrol engine which delivers 180bhp of maximum power. While the other engine on offer will be a 2.0-litre diesel version which will produce about 141 Bhp of peak power now both these engines are powerful and definitely powerful than the rest of the entry level cars available in our market presently so let’s find out every details about these powertrains and also the most awaited car from Audi for the year 2014.

UPDATE 07/08/14Audi Launched the A3 sedan in the Indian market today with prices starting at Rs.22.95 Lakhs (Ex Showroom Delhi. The details has been updated below)}}

Hit the jump to learn more details about the 2014 Audi A3 sedan

2014 Audi A3
  • Year: 2014
  • Make: Audi
  • Model: A3
  • Engine: 2.0 liter TDI Diesel engine
  • Transmission: 6 speed S-tronic automatic
  • Horsepower @ RPM: 150
  • Torque @ RPM: 320
  • Displacement: 2.0 L
  • Top Speed: 143 mph (Est.)
  • 0-100 time: 8.7 sec. (Est.)
  • car segment: compact cars
  • car fuel: diesel cars
  • body style: sedan

EXTERIOR

2014 Audi A3
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2014 Audi A3
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2014 Audi A3
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It is really hard to believe that the Audi A3 has been derived from Audi’s very own hatch. The rear of the A3 has been given a proper proportion and styling and has been blended perfectly with its sporty looking front.

2014 Audi A3
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However there is one problem which Audi has been facing lately and that is all their sedans are suffering from an identity crisis, to say it in a much simpler way the front styling of all their sedans looks similar to each other and if you see an Audi sedan coming down the road in front of you will have to stare carefully in order to find out which sedan is it exactly, and that is what is wrong with this new A3 also, the front of the compact sedan looks like a typical Audi with the front bumper which shares similar styling with any other Audi sedans. The sharp front headlamp is also similarly styled like any other Audi headlamps you will find, what is different though are the styling of the LED day time running lamps which is integrated with the headlamps of the new A3. The front hood of the sedan has a little ridge which adds a little muscle to the front as well as perfectly matches with the overall sporty nature of the car too.

Coming to the side profile of the car you will find that the wheel arches looks different than the other cars of its segment. The wheelbase also looks pretty long and that gives you the feeling that the car is not cramped inside and has fair amount of space. It also has stylish set of 18 inch alloy wheels which looks chunky. Come to the rear of the car and you will find sharp looking typical Audi LED tail lamps and a boot which is definitely not spacious like other Audi’s other sedans but still it has fair amount of space inside 425 liters to be exact and you can even fold the rear seats to extract 880 liters of boot space.

2014 Audi A3
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Overall the car is looks like a typical Audi and you can easily recognize it from a long distance however the exterior really looks modern and plush specially those styling elements that Audi uses in its other sedans is luckily available in this entry level A3 also.

The overall dimension of the Audi A3 has been provided below:

OVERALL LENGTH 4456mm
OVERALL WIDTH 1960mm
OVERALL HEIGHT 1416mm
WHEELBASE 2636mm
BOOT SPACE 420L

INTERIOR

2014 Audi A3
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2014 Audi A3
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2014 Audi A3
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Now when you enter the A3 saloon it will definitely impress you with its luxurious interiors, but as soon as you open the rear door and enter inside the A3 you will find that the rear seats of the A3 are not at all roomy like other Audi sedans and infact it is bit cramped up. The rear seats are not at all fit for 3 adults, and the amount of leg and head room is also not sufficient for a tall person. Now when you compare the front seats with that of the rear they are far more comfortable and spacious. The dashboard at the front looks quite modern specially the Jet styled round air-cons and the high quality fit and finish are the main highlight of the front dashboard. However there are few equipment bits which are carried over from the A3 hatch. This is not exactly a car for those who wants to be driven around by a chauffeur, the sporty front cockpit are really for those who wants to spend most of their time behind the driving wheel rather than seating at the back seat of the car.

When it comes to the equipment list Audi has loaded the A3 with lots of them, let us first start with the 7 inch monitor which comes out of the dashboard and gives you a true sense that Yes! You are really sitting inside a premium saloon’s cabin, the A3 also has been equipped with Audi’s latest updated version of the Multimedia interface (MMI), there is a start stop button beside the MMI interface buttons, the switches are handy and easy to operate. The instrument cluster too is large and clear and there is lot of information available for the person who is driving the car, there is even a trip computer and a digital information display right at the center of the two dials. The steering wheel also feels very sporty and covered in high quality leather it also has lots of steering mounted controls, although the plastic bits on the dashboard are not that impressive.

Overall the interiors are not as spacious like the bigger A4 or the A6 but it definitely has the quality materials fitted inside the car. The rear seats will be little cramp for 3 adults but it is fairly comfortable for 2 persons. There are even AC vents for the rear passengers which will be helpful keeping the Indian weather condition in mind, there is even a drop down arm rest at the rear seat of the car. So the A3 won’t let you down when it comes to its exterior styling and the quality and comfort of the interiors.

DRIVETRAIN

2014 Audi A3
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2014 Audi A3
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2014 Audi A3
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The A3 saloon is offered with lots of engine option as I already have mentioned earlier but India will be getting the 2.0 Liter TDI Diesel and 1.8 TFSI petrol.

Let us first talk about the new 1.8 TFSI Petrol engine first; this engine produces about 177 bhp of peak power at 5100 rpm and 250 Nm of torque in between 1250-5000 rpm. The petrol engine has been mated to a 7 speed dual clutch auto gearbox. While there is a 2.0 Liter TDI engine which powers the diesel unit. This engine produces about 150 Hp of peak power and 320 Nm of peak torque, this diesel engine is mated to a 6 speed S-tronic automatic gearbox. The diesel engine may not be as fun to drive as the petrol engine which offers better acceleration compared to other car of its class the A3 can reach the 100 km/h mark from standstill in just 8.1 seconds while the top speed is about 230 km/h mark. The 2.0 Liter Diesel engine on the other hand can accelerate from standstill to 100 km/h mark in just 8.7 seconds.

The engine details of the Audi A3 has been provided below:

Engine Type Maximum Power Output Maximum Torque Output Transmission
1.8 Liter TFSI 177 Bhp 250 Nm 7 speed dual clutch auto gearbox
2.0 Liter TDI 150 Hp 320 Nm 6 speed S-tronic automatic gearbox

RIDE AND HANDLING

2014 Audi A3
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When it comes to the ride and handling characteristics Audi won’t disappoint you at all, in fact the sporty handling of the A3 is also the plus point of this car. The magnetic suspension system which is introduced newly in the A3 works pretty well in offering a good and comfortable ride. What it actually does is it adapts itself with the condition of the road and provides you with a smooth ride. The suspension system fitted in the Audi A3 is not that stiff which will definitely be a boon for the Indian roads keeping the pot holes and bumps in mind, neither it is too soft which helps it to maintain the sporty handling of the car. The steering is responsive but it has all the advanced technologies in it which requires little involvement from the driver, the straight line stability on the Audi A3 is brilliant too.

Overall nothing has been compromised although this is an entry level offering from Audi for the Indian buyers luckily the A3 provides a perfect balance between the ride quality and overall comfort levels in this new saloon.

SAFETY FEATURES

2014 Audi A3
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The safety features which are available with the new Audi A3 saloon are:

- * Audi active lane assist
- * Audi pre sense basic- In case of an imminent rear-end collision, the system warns the driver using a staged reaction strategy; if necessary, it can even initiate hard braking
- * Adaptive cruise control (ACC)
- * 7 Airbags
- * Lane departure warning
- * Emergency city braking system this safety system has been added newly. What is actually does is if the driver is not paying attention in city traffic the car will automatically come to a halt if the vehicle infront of the A3 stops suddenly. Or it will also come to a halt if a pedestrian crosses the street infront of the saloon.

PRICING

The A3 was launched today and the prices has been provided below:

Diesel Variants

- * Audi A3 35TDI Attraction: Rs 22.95 lakh
- * Audi A3 35TDI Premium: Rs 25.95 lakh
- * Audi A3 35TDI Premium Plus: Rs 29.95 lakh
- * Audi A3 35TDI Technology: Rs 32.66 lakh

Petrol Variants

- * Audi A3 40TFSI Premium Plus: Rs 28.95 lakh

COMPETITION

As I already have mentioned earlier that the A3 is an entry level offering from the premium brand Audi in India thus it will compete with the other entry level competitors like the A and B class from Mercedes and the BMW X1 and the 1 series.

Mercedes A class

2013 Mercedes Benz A class
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Although this is a hatchback whereas the A3 will be a fully fledged saloon but because this is an entry level offering from BMW which has been priced under 30 lakhs makes it the competitor of the A3. The A class is powered by a cylinder, 1595cc direct-injection turbo-petrol engine generates maximum power of 122bhp at 5000rpm and 20.39kgm of torque at 1250-4000rpm, whereas the diesel engine generates 80 KW of maximum power and a 250 NM of maximum torque.

Mercedes B class

2012 Mercedes Benz B class
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This is also a hatchback offering from Mercedes but this one is definitely not as sporty as the A class. The B class is powered by a 1.6 litre turbocharged petrol engine that churns out 122 bhp of maximum power at 5000 RPM and 200 NM of torque at 1250-4000 RPM. There is also a Diesel engine option for this hatchback

CONCLUSION

2014 Audi A3
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The Audi A3 saloon is a well loaded car with plenty of exciting features packed both in its exterior and interior as well. Audi has planned to launch this new entry level sedan within August 2014 here in India. The pricing will be the main USP of this car. There will also be a diesel and petrol engine options to choose from and thus it will also force other premium manufacturers to experiment with smaller and compact saloons. Audi A3 will surely give tough competition to the other premium manufacturers in India and forcing them to go back to their design tables and bring something more interesting for the Indian market priced well within the budget of the consumers.

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Source: Audi A3

Riju Ganguly
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