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Audi’s S3 cabriolet arrives in time to compare with BMW 2 Series

The small premium market in the US may have two new convertibles soon.

Audi has released details of its nifty 2015 S3 Cabriolet. The new convertible coupe will be a direct competitor to the BMW 235i convertible about to be launched. The new S3 will be Audi’s smallest convertible in the US if it brings the car here.

Although it only has a 2.0 liter TSI turbocharged four cylinder engine, the Audi motor will come very close to matching BMW’s in-line 6 cylinder turbo engine for usable power. At 300 horsepower the small drop top coupe will be a quick car. Audi predicts a 0-60 time of 5.4 seconds. The transmission will be the S-Tronic dual clutch automatic with launch control.

The 2015 Audi S3 cabriolet will be a viable alternative to the Audi A5 for those that fit the car. It is important to temper expectations for this car if you are a full-sized male. The car will be small and the two jump seats stuffed behind the fronts will not help things. Built with a lot of aluminum and even some magnesium the S3 will have a reasonably low weight of about 3600 pounds. Audi is promising Quattro all-wheel-drive. Despite the many advantages of AWD in winter, the real reason Audi is so into AWD in its cars is that without it they are front wheel drive. In fact, in normal driving the cars only use the front wheels to pull the vehicle around. That type of drive system just does not measure up to the price bracket the automaker likes to play in. That said, we do know owners of AWD convertibles and they find the cars offer them an alternative to owning two vehicles.

Prices have not been announced for US based cars, but the base S3 in Germany starts at a staggering $48,000 Euros (about $66,000 USD). Let’s hope that the US model, if there is one, is somehow priced much lower than that.

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