Having unveiled the new A3 earlier this month, Audi is now hard at work delivering performance versions of its compact car. The middling S3 should come pretty soon, but the one we’re waiting for is the top-dog RS3, which will take the fight to the latest Mercedes-AMG A 45.

We’ve seen spyshots of the hatchback before, but this time our spies have managed to snag photos of the sedan as well. The hot four-door looks as handsome as its lesser variants, with a short rump and sleek L-shaped tail lights. Beyond that, this development prototype is as per the hatch mules, sporting a much wider front track that is covered by rather crude wheel arch extensions.

The bumpers, meanwhile, are from the S3 (evident by the larger air intakes compared to the regular A3), which explains the mismatch in width between the front bumper and fenders. Also visible are large wheels, wrapped in low-profile tyres and hiding huge cross-drilled front brakes. The trademark Audi Sport oval exhaust pipes are visible at the rear, poking out from under the diffuser.

Expect the RS3 to be powered by the same 2.5 litre turbocharged five-cylinder engine as before, but tweaked above and beyond the 400 PS and 480 Nm of torque it currently makes – it needs to at least match the A 45 S’ 421 PS and 500 Nm, after all. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and quattro all-wheel drive will likely feature, and possibly a mild hybrid system as well to improve fuel economy and emissions.


GALLERY: Audi RS3 Sportback spyshots