With sleek, elongated proportions borrowed from the A3 sedan, the A3 cabriolet was tailor-made for the U.S. market. Americans wouldn’t dare part with their hard earned for the previous-gen A3 cab, whose notchback roofline, frumpy proportions, and cramped trunk put off our super-size shoppers. Yet this new S3 variant, the most attractive of Audi’s compact droptops, hasn’t yet been confirmed for stateside delivery.
Like the S3 sedan—and the Volkswagen Golf R—the S3 cabriolet is powered by a 300-hp 2.0-liter turbo four that produces 280 lb-ft of torque. Unlike Europe’s standard S3 hatchback,
the S3 cab comes exclusively with a six-speed dual-clutch automatic.
Should Audi decide to sell the S3 in America, it’s likely that it would
be offered with the firm’s buttery-smooth six-speed stick.
shifted S3 cabrios offer launch control, allowing for even the most
uninitiated to sprint from standstill to 62 mph in a claimed 5.4
seconds. Top speed is governed at 155 mph for Euro-spec models.
According to the rainbows-and-unicorns European fuel-economy testing
cycle, the droptop S3 is good for 33 mpg.
The S3 cab makes use of a front strut suspension setup and a multilink
rear axle. Quattro all-wheel drive is standard, and a bunch of the major
chassis systems are electric in nature, including the power steering,
available active dampers, and brake-based torque vectoring. The S3
cabriolet rides on 18-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in 225/40 rubber,
while 19s are optional.
At a claimed 3571 pounds, the S3 convertible is nearly 500 pounds
heavier than an S3 hatchback. However, the cabrio is longer and its
trunk is larger than the hatchback’s, even when the droptop is folded
down. As is Audi practice, it’s a fabric top, and one that can be raised
and lowered in a mere 18 seconds and at speeds of up to 30 mph.
Thanks to: Car and Driver