As hot hatchbacks go, little else can sear the senses quite like the Audi RS3 Sportback. Freshly updated for 2015, the 362hp, four-wheel drive Volkswagen Golf R rival delivers the sort of straight line speed that would make a supercar blush.
Unlike those two-seat thoroughbreds, however, the five-door RS3 boasts room for five people. But how much space does it offer exactly? We’ve rounded up the RS3’s vital stats to give you an idea of how easy it’ll be to live with every day.
Based on the humble A3 Sportback, the overall dimensions are largely similar. A combination of a more aggressive front bumper (to help cool the 2.5-litre turbocharged engine) and a chunky downforce-aiding rear bumper, the RS3 is 33mm longer than the standard car. The suspension is dropped by 25mm so it sits slightly lower, and wider arches housing larger wheels mean it’s grown outwards by a modest 15mm too.
Nothing too startling here – chances are if the regular A3 (or indeed Volkswagen Golf, which shares the same platform) can fit in your garage, then this will too.
Four adults can sit in the RS3 without any complaints of limited space. Leg, head and shoulder room are all more than acceptable and, as you’d expect, pretty comparable to the average family hatchback.
The RS3 is only available in five-door form, which means that, in performance car terms, practicality is impressive.
|Shoulder room (front/rear)||1,392mm/1,344mm|
While the standard A3 Sportback offers a decent 380-litre load bay, the RS3’s four wheel drive system eats into boot space. As a result, overall volume drops to 280 litres. Both the Mercedes A45 AMG (341 litres) and the Volkswagen Golf R (343 litres) offer more room.
Indeed, that means it’s smaller than most superminis – and is worth bearing in mind if you intend to drive the family to any European holidays.
|Seats up||280 litres|
|Seats down||1,120 litres|
Turning circle and fuel tank capacity
Considering the performance on offer, a claimed fuel economy of 34.9mpg isn’t bad at all. It means that if you brim the RS3’s 55-litre fuel tank before setting off on a steady drive, you might be able to eke out a range of approximately 420 miles.
In the case of a number of performance cars, the turning circle can suffer just a little – more robust suspensions components and larger wheels sometimes prevent the wheels from steering as far as they might otherwise. Thankfully, the compromise in the RS3 is minimal – at 10.9m, its turning circle is only a 0.2m wider than the regular A3.
|Turning circle||10.9 metres|
|Fuel tank||55 litres|
The combination of a five-cylinder turbocharged engine, quattro four-wheel drive and a dual-clutch DSG automatic gearbox means the RS3 is fairly heavy by hatchback standards. However, thanks to a mix of improved construction methods and trimmed-down components (like the carbon front sports seats) the latest RS3 weighs 55kg less than the model it replaces. It also means it weighs 35kg less than the Mercedes A45 AMG, too.
|Audi RS3 Sportback||1,520kg|
A gripping performance
If you’d like to find out more about the Audi RS3, our full review takes an in-depth look of what the UK’s motoring press think of it. Need to pick a colour? Our handy guide should be just the trick. Head over to our deals page to see our latest discounts, or to our car chooser if you still need help picking your next car.