Last year, we reported that the sweet Audi RS3 is more or less guaranteed for the U.S., likely in sedan form, as Audi’s U.S. CEO Scott Keogh considers it a “great halo car” for the line. And now, this picture, leaked via Instagram and posted on Quattroworld.com, depicts the RS3 sedan model during a video shown at an Audi U.S. employee summit.
Before we go on, though, there has been some debate among Internet commenters about it possibly being the RS4, a car equally shrouded in mystery at this point. Here’s how we know it’s an RS3: the lower swage line, a.k.a. “light catcher,” in the lower doors is strictly a positive surface both on today’s A3/S3 models and on this car, while the same element on the A4/S4 is a negative surface above a positive surface. Granted, the headlamps on this car look like those on the new A4, but the A3 is due for a facelift next year, and the same reports allege that the RS3 will don the A3’s new face, which will adopt the A4-style headlamp design. The RS4 is also likely to feature prominent fender flares, which this car does not.
Oh yeah, and when we reached out to Audi spokeswoman Amelia Fine-Morrison, she confirmed it is indeed the upcoming RS3. So there.
While Fine-Morrison wouldn’t say anything else about the RS3, based on our earlier reporting, we expect it will be powered by Audi’s hand-built, turbocharged five-cylinder engine, which currently produces 367 horsepower and 343 lb-ft of torque in the hatchback RS3, upon which we have slobbered from afar for the last year or so. That car also comes with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic and offers carbon-ceramic front brake discs, eight-piston front brake calipers, and ultrawide front tires. Time will tell if Audi specs the U.S.-bound sedan the same way, or if Audi extracts even more power from the five-pot engine (as it did in the 525-hp A3 Clubsport concept from 2014). In any case, the appearance of this grainy picture has brought anticipation to a boil. We can’t wait.