Audi A3 & S3

A quarter of a century after Audi debuted its premium compact hatch in 1996, the A3 returns with a bold new exterior and interior design.

Oct 19, 2021

Matched with the engaging, sporty character of the companion S3, the pair offer revitalised on-road dynamic abilities and a host of intuitive technologies for the driver.

With so many New Zealanders have taken their first step into the Audi brand with the A3 – whether in a brand-new or second-hand example – Audi says the compact hatchback has represented a true first step towards a long appreciation of everything the carmaker can deliver for all sorts of Kiwi drivers.

The fourth generation A3 has now arrived and mixes new features with signature design cues.

The new Audi A3 Sportback features compact proportions and a striking design. The wide ‘Singleframe’ grille and large air inlets at the front are reminiscent of the Audi family and accentuate the dynamic character of the premium hatchback.

Sophisticated design traits are continued in the interior with the new transmission shifter, aluminium or carbon inlays, striking door openers and an instrument panel with a black panel look. The cockpit of the A3 Sportback is wholly focused on the driver. It uses familiar elements from the brand’s full-size models and is equipped with a 10.1-inch touch display as standard, which is integrated into the centre of the instrument panel. This recognises letters entered by hand, provides acoustic feedback, and can be controlled using natural language. The instrument cluster, which the driver operates via the multifunction steering wheel, is also digital as standard. The Audi virtual cockpit screen measures 12.3 inches diagonally, and offers three different views, including a large display of the navigation map.


The new A3 Sportback arrives in New Zealand with a sophisticated 1.5-litre, four-cylinder TFSI engine delivering 110kW and includes a 48-volt mild-hybrid system (MHEV). Available with a seven-speed S-tronic transmission, the A3 delivers combined fuel consumption of 5.0-litres/100km. A 2.0-litre, four-cylinder TFSI engine is also available, with 140kW of power on tap. Also, for the first time in the A3, the 2.0-litre TFSI engine now comes with Audi’s renowned quattro drive system for improved driving dynamics and safety. The more potent version features the same seven-speed S-tronic transmission, with combined fuel consumption of 5.7-litres/100km.

And speaking of ‘potent’, Audi has also introduced the latest edition of the Audi S3 Sportback hot hatch, bringing more driving enjoyment, greater refinement and ride comfort, technology and design from the full-size Audi performance range.


The new S3 Sportback displays its dynamic prowess from the very first glance. The shoulder of the body extends in a strong line from the headlights to the rear lights. The areas below are curved inward – a new element of Audi’s design that places a stronger emphasis on the wheel arches, which are reminiscent of the quattro blisters found on Audi’s RS models. At the rear end, the large diffuser and the four exhaust tailpipes accentuate the sporty look.


The S3 Sportback’s 2.0-litre TFSI achieves maximum power output of 228kW, with 400Nm of torque on tap – leading to a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 4.8 seconds. A seven-speed S-tronic transmission, quattro drive with intelligent control, and an S-specific sport suspension with damper control deliver the power to the road effortlessly.


The driver can use the Audi drive select system to make the sound of the powerful four-cylinder turbo engine even crisper. The seven-speed S-tronic with lightning-fast gearshifts and freewheeling function, and the quattro all-wheel drive deliver the torque to the road. The S sport suspension with damper control sees valves control the oil flow in the dampers so that they can adapt to the condition of the road, the driving situation, and the driver’s individual selection in a few thousandths of a second.


As to be expected in the dynamic S3, the spread between comfort and dynamism is even wider than on the previous model, while the four-link rear axle and progressive steering offers everything required for pure driving enjoyment.

  • Audi A3 Sportback 35 TFSI Advanced – $57,900 (plus ORCs).

  • Audi A3 Sportback 40 TFSI quattro S-line – $69,900 (plus ORCs).

  • Audi S3 Sportback – $89,500 (plus ORCs).