Audi surprises with all-new A3 sedan at New York Auto Show

Audi held a private event at the 2014 to reveal the all-new 2014 Audi A3 sedan to invited media.

2014 Audi A3 TDIThe event held at a secluded studio, within the Chelsea Pier facility, featured 2 versions of the latest entry to Audi’s line up. Originally introduced as a 2 door hatchback and followed by the 5 door Sportback, this latest model marks the first time the popular A3 has been offered in a sedan format.

In creating the sedan version all new body panels were utilized and as such the only carry-overs from the hatchback and Sportback models were the headlights and the front grille.

The sedan features a roofline that is 25 mm lower than the models with a tailgate. Surprisingly this reduction does not affect interior room. Audi indicates that the sedan has a cargo capacity of 425 litres of storage in the trunk. This figure is some 45 litres more than the hatch or Sportback when measured to the height of the rear seat, a safety measure. The rear seats fold forward individually with a 60/40 split

The interior of this latest generation of A3 has been upgraded immensely over the previous generation of A3. Audi has sought to redefine the concept of premium compact car and will now boast that any technology available in the brand lineup will be available on the A3 lineup. The display vehicles featured such niceties as upgraded MMI LCD screen, adaptive cruise control, active lane assist and Quattro all-wheel-drive. Surprisingly one of teh most innovative feaatures on the A3 is the plunger-style adjustable air vents found on the dashboard. Pulling or pushing on the air nozzles either diffuses the airflow over a wider area or will concentrate it down to a narrow stream for extra effect. This is a first such adjustment I have encountered on a vehicle and is remarkable in its effect.

The A3 sedan will be offered with a range of engines. While not yet finalized, North America looks to be getting a base 1.8L 180HP four cylinder TFSI engine, a 2.0L TDI Clean Diesel option and the S3 will be fitted with 2.0L TFSI reportedly cranking out 300HP. All engines are reportly paired with S-Tronic double clutch transmissions. The top speed of the S3 will be allegedly capped at 250 kms/hr. The performance model boasts a ride height that is 15mm lower than the standard A3. The S3 will feature a tacked on rear spoiler as opposed to the upswing found on the trunk lids of regular A3 models.

Look for the latest A3 to go on sale in Canada early in 2014 and will be officially unveiled at the Shanghai Auto Show in April.