2013 Audi S3 Heats up German Compact Segment

2013 Audi S3 Heats up German Compact Segment

With stylish, understated execution, the 2013 Audi S3 sport hatch s yet another car from Audi sitting on the floor during the 2012 Paris Motor Show that you can’t have.

It’s really too bad too, because the sporty little three door might make short work of others available in North America like the Focus ST or VW Golf GTI. Maybe that’s why Audi isn’t offering it to the American market, or maybe it’s just plain greedy.

Either way, you’re missing out on a practical daily driver with 300 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque, which is a 39-hp gain over the previous model. That’s tanks in no small part to an engine Audi completely redesigned for the model. It’s something the automaker went to great pains in explaining, though all you really need to know is that it will be smoother, more powerful and considerably more sophisticated.

Better yet, it loses 132 lbs over last year by riding on Volkswagen’s new MQB architecture — something it shares with the 2014 VW Golf. Sharing that structure lengthens the car, though by a although only by a negligible .62 inches.

Even with the improved power, the car will be tamer toward gas consumption than its predecessor because of a new efficiency mode that that optimizes the automatic air conditioning system and cruise control to use less gas. When equipped with the Stronic transmission the car will coast much the same as a manual would when the gas pedal isn’t depressed.

Finally, the S3 gets LED headlights – a first for the premium compact segment and perhaps a sign of something to come in the A3 sedan given how very “in vogue” LEDs are with automotive deign teams today.

GALLERY: 2013 Audi S3