After a successful last year, Audi unveiled its latest offering, A3 at the Auto Expo 2014. This will become the most affordable car of Audi in India after its official launch. In terms of appearance, the car looks like the sportier and compact version of its elder sibling, A4 and targets the young crowd who aspire to become the first time Audi owner.
This will be a front wheel drive only equipped with Audi’s S-tronic dual clutch transmission; A3 also becomes the first Audi car to be produced without using Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive system to avoid high pricing. Despite keeping price check in mind, Audi has not compromised on the interior quality of A3 as it has premium and up-marketing interiors giving tough competition to its competitors.
Unlike its main rivals, Mercedes and BMW, Audi has not opted for a hatchback design for its entry level car as they have seen the bent of Indians towards sedan cars. Indians tend to pay for the size and that’s why Audi has strategically developed their A3 keeping its compact proportions similar to the full size A4.
One thing which is not very surprising about A3 is that its rear legroom is less than the A4 but it would be more than enough for being a compact luxury sedan. A3 will be powered by a 1.8L TFSI turbo petrol and 2.0L TDI engine with an expected price tag of around INR 22 or 23 lakhs. Audi will try to keep considerable amount of difference between the pricing of A3 and A4 which starts around INR27 lakhs (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi) so that buyers don’t get confuse due to the narrow price gap affecting the sales of A4.
Audi is also planning to offer A3 with a manual gearbox as they have earlier done with Q3S. This will further help Audi to position A3 below all other entry level luxury cars in India but it will also soon have a rival in form of the Mercedes-Benz CLA. We can't wait to drive them both.