Audi Reveals Huge Handling Upgrades for the S3

by Nik Berg
14 February 2024 2 min read
Audi Reveals Huge Handling Upgrades for the S3

The next Audi S3 may still be clad in camouflage but the four-ringed firm has let loose an avalanche of information on the car’s dynamic and technology updates.

Although the power and performance of the S3 saloon and hatchback are significantly ramped up, the biggest improvements are to the way the car handles, with major upgrades to the axle, steering, brakes and drive assists for “driving dynamics on a new level.”

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Audi S3 Sedan prototype / S3 Sportback prototype

The S3’s two-litre four-cylinder turbocharged motor is now boosted by almost 23 bhp to 328 bhp, with a hike in torque to 310 lbft. Driving all four wheels through a revised seven-speed S tronic transmission with more rapid shifts the S3 will accelerate from rest to 62 mph in 4.7 seconds and on to a top speed limited to 155 mph. These numbers aren’t noticeably up on the outgoing car, but there’s said to be a notable difference in way the power is delivered. The turbocharger is preloaded, which means that at a steady speed or low levels of acceleration the turbo spins at a constant velocity. Boot it and there’s a much more rapid response than before.

Audi S3 Sedan prototype 10

There’s a new dynamic plus driving mode, which increases engine idle speed for immediate pickup and sets the more advanced ESC system for ‘modest interventions’ to allow for some oversteer. In this mode as much torque as possible is sent to the rear wheels, while downshifts are also more responsive.

The McPherson strut front suspension is stiffened and has a new pivot bearing that increases negative camber to 1.5 degrees – almost double that of its predecessor. Coupled with a progressive steering system that becomes more direct the more the driver turns, the S3 is promised to tip into corners more eagerly and offer better feedback and precision. Wisely, the brakes are upgraded to feature 18-inch rotors on the front axle. A choice of 19-inch 235/35 tyres will also be available.

Audi has been testing the upgrades in the heat of the Salalah desert of Oman with the car still wearing disguise, but you can expect a full reveal very soon.

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Audi S3 Sedan prototype 3
Audi S3 Sedan prototype 2
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Audi S3 Sedan prototype 7
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