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Audi A1, A3 Getting 3-Cylinder Engines Photo:
 
 
Mike Stevens | Apr, 26 2014 | 4 Comments

Audi boss Rupert Stadler has confirmed the company’s smallest offerings will soon feature efficient three-cylinder engines.

Destined for the light A1 and the small A3, the new engines will likely form the entry-level option in both ranges as Audi pursues ever-lower fuel figures.

Speaking with British paper Auto Express this week, Stadler added that the small engines are not likely to appear in Audi’s larger models in the near future.

“I think for a while, we will stay with the entry-level products. I’m not quite sure if the market in the mid to long run responds to three-cylinder tech,” Stadler told the paper.

“But just look at it 10-15 years ago when six-cylinder was a must and now four-cylinder has taken over.”

Among the carmaker’s three-cylinder engines is a trio of 1.0 litre units producing between 44 and 66kW, along with a 1.4 litre turbodiesel engine.

Three-cylinder power is already available in a number of Volkswagen Group models, including the updated 2015 Polo hatch, along with the VW Up, Skoda Citigo and Seat Mii trio.

Locally, only one Volkswagen offering comes with a three-cylinder unit - the Up - although that number will soon drop to zero, with Volkswagen having axed the tiny city car from its Australian line-up.

A number of Volkswagen rivals are also utilising three-cylinder engines in various markets, including Ford with its light Fiesta hatch and EcoSport crossover, and MINI’s new Cooper range.

Reports in recent months have even pointed to a three-cylinder diesel version of the BMW 5 Series, although the company has yet to confirm plans.

MORE: Three-Cylinder models

 
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