As the Detroit Auto Show nears, the excitement is quite palpable. The reason behind the excitement is the Mercedes CLA – a compact sedan that will create a new segment in the luxury car market.
Essentially the Mercedes CLA is a smaller sedan that will sit beneath the Mercedes C Class targeted at young aspirational executives.
Deep inside the skunkworks of the Ingolstadt giant, Audi engineers are spending days and nights to develop the Audi A3 sedan to rival the Mercedes CLA. We have seen many test mules in European countries on tests.
First shown in its concept avatar at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, the production version will be based on the Audi A3 hatchback platform.
Based on the MQB platform, the Audi A3 sedan will be 4.40 metres long making it slightly smaller than the A4 which is 4.76 metres wide.
Most of the design cues from the A3 sedan concept should make it to the production version.
Power may come from 3 engines -
- 1.4 TFSI (Petrol)
- 1.8L TFSI (Petrol)
- 2.0L TDI (Diesel)
All these engines are mated to a 7 speed S-tronic transmission. There are also rumors of S3 and RS3 variants with better performance as is the case S and RS derivatives of other Audi models.
We are expecting the A3 sedan to be loaded with features such as park assist, traffic sign detection, active lane assist, cruise control and adaptive lighting. The Audi A3 sedan is expected to land at the dealers by the end of 2013.
Looking at Audi’s aggressive expansion plans in India, we have no doubt in our mind that the A3 sedan is India bound by 2014. It will sit below the Audi Q3 Compact SUV in a price range of 15 -20 lakhs.