Drivers are both droptop people or they’;re not. As most typically are not – at least as far as the willingness to buy 1 is concerned – all convertibles tend to remain strictly niche vehicles. Therefore, automakers must request a noticeably greater price for them.
The Audi S3 Cabriolet is about as niche as you can get in the open daylight of mainstream automaking. Of program, the S3 cab does not really want to sell in huge volumes it exists due to the fact it really is an simple and not too pricey bit of flair for the business. In the US, this model would almost certainly base out at close to $ 44,000 if it had been to join our fleet, which is problematic, as I will soon investigate.
In what may possibly be a indicator that Audi is primarily okay with all this, it had me up to central Sweden to twist about on the snow and ice in the open S3. The grounds ended up supplying treasured minor ice and snow, so I drove the 2-door ragtop on dusty, thawing Scandinavian roads. This was a blessing actually, given that ice driving in a cabrio – even a Quattro a single – doesn’;t truly reveal a lot of anything about such a auto in its normal day-to-day lifestyle.
- Seeing the bandwidth the Volkswagen Group continues to get out of its 2.-liter TFSI 4-cylinder engine is amazing. (Witness the 420-horsepower TT Quattro Sport showcar from the current Geneva Motor Show.) Here, we’;re at 296 brake horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque.
- My white test car’;s optional interior colour scheme employs sizzling red accents that are not only surprisingly great hunting, but also beautifully place together.
- Appropriately, for the individuals who typically acquire a white 4-passenger convertible with fairly silvery mirror housings, the only transmission available is a 6-pace dual-clutch S-tronic. The slick-shifting gearbox has been manufactured all the much better by including Audi Drive Choose (Adverts) as a regular characteristic, with Efficiency, Comfort, Automobile or Dynamic modes accessed by means of the MMI infotainment technique.
- The S sports activities exhaust offers very good sound, and with Advertisements in Dynamic mode, its flaps are left open to boost the thrum of the 4 tailpipes.
- Audi’;s default S sport suspension is also a standard attribute, so the S3 Cabriolet seems to be the component, sitting a full inch reduce than a normal A3. The stance over its common 18-inch wheels and tires – Dunlop SP Winter Sport for late winter in Scandinavia – puts on a excellent present, although optional 19s would appear wonderful on Sunset Boulevard.
- Total proportions are markedly better than people of its predecessor, however to my eyes, this new model is nevertheless a tiny off due to its fairly truncated front overhang and prolonged rear overhang.
- The S3’;s all-crucial cloth roof has a theatrical opening and closing action that will take 18 seconds by my watch. You can have it do the dance while rolling along at 31 miles per hour or much less, but I appreciated viewing the convertible’;s action even though stationary.
- Versus other A3/S3 models, the cabrio adds some 450+ pounds in an effort to preserve the wide-open configuration from flexing too significantly. That’;s fairly a penalty, and the added excess weight is felt in the car’;s half-2nd slower acceleration to 62 mph, which, at 5.4 seconds is even now plenty quick for this elegant crowd.
- Cranking the climate, activating the optional heat on the sport seats and sporting cozy outfits while going best down in cold climate is one particular of my favored workout routines, and the S3 is good exciting in this mode, especially soon after acquiring the driver-configurable Ads settings adjusted to Dynamic mode.
S3 Cabriolet deliveries commence in Western Europe at the starting of June. The possibility of Audi supplying a no-cost switch to a 6-velocity manual is not out of the question according to my sources, but it would be no shock if the firm caught to the S-tronic.
Irrespective of how good this car is, asking over $ 40k for this vehicle in the US would make it a difficult sell, specifically with the larger and much more trendy (if less potent) A5 Cabriolet commencing at $ 44,500 and the smaller, far more stylish TT Roadster at $ 42,900. Of program, Audi appears newly committed to giving a complete assortment of A3 versions here – with diesel and plug-in electrics between them – so it is still achievable it will add this S3 as its 4th convertible model in North America. Even so, we wouldn’;t bet on it.