Audi Previews RS3 With 525-HP Clubsport Concept

Audi Previews RS3 With 525-HP Clubsport Concept

The Worthersee Meeting is going to showcase extreme power and dynamics this year with the Audi A3 Clubsport Quattro Concept.

Pumping a staggering 525 hp from a 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine – the same powerplant found in the RS Q3 – the concept will be on display in Reifnitz, Austria from May 28 to 31.

“The Audi A3 Clubsport Quattro Concept shows our car and tuning fans at the Wörthersee just how much sporty potential there is in the A3 family and in our top‑of‑the‑line engines such as the 2.5 TFSI,” Audi development boss Ulrich Hackenberg said in a statement. “We have pushed the limits in every respect with this show car: power, dynamics, sound, design.”

With a total weight of 3,366 lbs, the S3-based concept boasts a power-to-weight ratio of 6.4 hp per lb. The engine also puts out 442.5 lb-ft of torque between 2,300 and 6,000 RPM and is enough to help the car sprint from 0-62 mph (100 km/h) in 3.6 seconds with a top speed of 192.6 MPH.

Boost has been increased over versions of the engine that make it into production cars with 1.5 bar of pressure along with a revised intercooler, intake and exhaust. In fact, most of the cars mechanical components have been revised to accommodate the high-output engine.

Shifting is handled by a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox with a tall seventh gear designed to offer fuel savings at cruising speeds. Launch control is still a part of the package and offers starts from full power with limited wheel slip. Torque can be redirected to the rear wheels, but Audi didn’t say how much twist can shift to the rear.

The steering ratio becomes progressively sharper as the wheel is turned and the electrically boosted system’s assistance is reduced as speed increases to improve communication between the wheels and driver at higher speeds.

Audi lowered the body by almost half an inch compared to the production S3 and the suspension settings can be re-tuned via the struts for road or track use.

Speaking of going to the track, the concept is ready to race with carbon ceramic brakes and 275 mm width tires on 21-inch wheels. Stability control is partially or fully defeatable although the car will apply braking for torque vectoring to improve cornering.

Audi has more tricks up its sleeve, too. At high speeds, the car has an air brake. The trunk spoiler is able to go from its normal raised position to being almost vertically positioned. At 155.3 mph, the company said stopping distances are reduced by almost 40 feet. That’s partially because of the intentionally created drag, but also because the system will recognize increased downforce over the rear axle and apply more braking power there.

Despite the hardcore performance intent, Audi says the car can still seat four people comfortably with racing buckets for the driver and front seat passenger cased in carbon fiber reinforced polymer as is much of the car inside and out.

Because this car is based on the S3 and borrows an engine from another model currently in production, it’s hard not to imagine that this is a thinly-veiled preview of what could become the RS3. Lately, Audi’s concept cars held a common theme: high performance.

Last September in Frankfurt, the brand brought its hybrid Sport Quattro concept to the public. In Geneva, the Audi TT quattro sport concept also boasted a heavily boosted version of the 2.0-liter powerplant found in production versions of the TT. That car makes 420 hp.

GALLERY: Audi A3 Clubsport Quattro Concept

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