Car news

16 May 2014

Audi has built a 525bhp A3

One-off, 310kph 'clubsport quattro' saloon is faster than an RS6. Wait, what?

Vijay Pattni
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There was never any doubt as to the calibre and sheer tunability of Audi's 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine - the one found in the TT RS and last-gen RS3.

But... 525bhp? Yep, that just happened: meet the Audi A3 clubsport quattro. No capital letters, much fastness.

It's a one-off concept built for the upcoming annual Worthersee Meeting, an event that allows VW, Audi and Skoda enthusiasts unfettered access to the most tweaked VAG Group cars on earth.

And as per The Rules, Audi has built something special to rewards its fans. The MQB-platformed A3 saloon gets that 2.5-litre five-pot - the 2010 International Engine of the Year, no less - tuned to produce 525bhp and a whopping torque figure of 600Nm.

It's been upgraded with a bigger turbocharger capable of 1.5 bar of boost pressure, together with a modified intercooler and other unlisted ‘extensive modifications' that, if they prevent this thing grenading itself at the redline, must be extensive indeed.

Because 0-100kph takes just 3.6 seconds (making it quicker than an RS6), and it'll top out at 310kph. That's... bloody fast.

The intake and exhaust systems have been reinforced - lest they explode - while the latter is said to give off a very distinctive ‘snarl'. Mention is made of the 1-2-4-5-3 firing order, which we're promised will give that distinctive five-pot thrum, while the bonnet is built from carbon fibre reinforced polymer for additional cool points.

This monster engine - boasting nearly as much horsepower as the R8 V10, don't forget - comes complete with a seven-speed S-tronic automatic gearbox with, helpfully, a taller seventh gear 'for better fuel consumption'. Yep. There's also a launch control function, which may be rather more relevant.

There's four-wheel-drive, naturally, with torque vectoring too. The clubsport concept gets lightweight aluminium front suspension components, stiffer adjustable springs and dampers, and a 10mm drop in ride height. All in, the A3 clubsport weighs 1,527kg - little more than a new BMW M3/M4.

No show car would be complete without entirely-kerbable 21in alloys hiding monster 370mm diameter carbon fibre brake discs. There are CFRP side sill trims, a large diffuser, an air brake, huge air inlets up front and racing seats inside. More schportiness is achieved via a black/red/white instrument cluster, black Alcantara and brushed aluminium, while the footrest and pedals are made from stainless steel.

It's certainly a stupidly-fast A3, but is it the wackiest Worthersee show car you've ever seen? The W12 Golf Jeremy drove on TG a while back remains tough to beat...

Tags: quattro, clubsport quattro, a3, a3 clubsport quattro, audi

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