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Audi A3 Saloon concept at Geneva

Mon, 21 Feb 2011

The Audi A3 Saloon Concept - previews the next generation A3

When you’re Audi, you’re expected to fill every premium niche imaginable – and then some. And it seems someone at Audi has realised that they’re missing out on a saloon (or Sedan, if you’re from the former Colonies) version of the Audi A3. Which will never do.

So we’re going to get the Audi A3 Saloon Concept at Geneva next week. But this isn’t just any old A3 with a boot grafted on the back. On, no.

This A3 saloon has a 408bhp, turbocharged, 2.5-litre five-pot – which we assume has come on holiday to Geneva from the TT RS or the quattro concept – and comes complete with the de rigeur quattro drivetrain. Doubtless a clear signpost to the RS3.

But this A3 isn’t just an extra version of the A3 to add to the hatchback, convertible and sportback, but is the next version of the A3 – due in 2012 – which will come with the saloon version previewed here, as well as the existing variants.

And although the UK and Europe will get the A3 saloon, this is Audi waking up to the downsizing going on in the US (and other places) where conservative buyers are still looking for a ‘Sedan’, even if they downsize.

So Audi are intent on giving them what they want. The styling - although definitely a saloon – is very much four-door coupe, with its high waistline and shallow greenhouse. The nose gets a six-cornered grill and a sharp set of headlights and the back end gets a sloping boot and a distinctly A7 vibe.

Another niche ticked.

By Cars UK