The Sportback’s styling closely mirrors the three door bodystyle unveiled at Geneva in March, its taller roofline and larger glasshouse accommodating the additional doors.
Like the current generation A3 Sportback, the 2013 model is longer than its three-door counterpart (by 73mm), while the Sportback bodystyle features a 35mm extended wheelbase for the first time.
This wheelbase is 58mm longer than the current A3 Sportback - improving rear seat head and legroom - and contributes to a 78mm growth in overall length.
Based on the Volkswagen Group’s new MQB platform, the new A3 Sportback is lighter by up to 90kg through greater use of lightweight materials and high-strength steel.
International engine options will initially include 1.4 and 1.8 litre TFSI units, along with a 2.0 litre TDI diesel.
A new aluminium-block 1.2 litre TFSI unit will follow later, along with an efficiency-leading 1.6 litre TDI diesel.
Spec levels largely match the three door model already on sale in European markets, but the Sportback brings the option of all-LED headlights to the segment for the first time.
Audi has only released images of the new A3 Sportback in S line sport trim for now - expect lesser versions to use less aggressive front and rear fascias and smaller diameter wheels than those pictured.
These lesser models are likely to appear on Audi’s Paris Auto Show stand, ahead of a February 2013 European on-sale date.
Speaking today with TMR, Audi Australia’s Shaun Cleary suggested that like the current model, the new Sportback will be the sole A3 bodystyle available locally.
A second quarter 2013 launch is planned, with local engine options yet to be finalised.
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