The Audi A4 Allroad Is Getting A Baby Brother

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Audi is building a rugged high-riding version of the compact A3 for the first time.

The third-generation Audi A3 Sedan arrived for the 2022 model year, spawning a high-performance RS3 variant that debuted back in July with 400 horsepower on tap. In Europe, the A3 is also available as a compact Sportback, and now Audi has been caught testing a new member of the A3 family.

For the first time, Audi is giving the A3 the rugged Allroad treatment. We got our first look at the new high-riding A3 last month, and now our spy photographers have caught Audi assessing the new Allroad in Sweden during cold-weather testing before it enters production. Think of it as the A4 Allroad's baby brother that slots between the regular A3 and the Q3 crossover.

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Like the last prototype, the A3 Allroad prototype is wrapped in camouflage leaving the hood, sides, roof, and upper rear exposed. Models like the Mercedes E-Class All-Terrain and Volvo V60 Cross Country are becoming increasingly popular, providing rugged styling and a higher ride height for those who don't want to buy an SUV. However, the A3 Allroad will be much smaller than other models in this segment. With the Volvo V40 and its Cross Country sibling now defunct globally, and no similar product from premium rivals, Audi will have the segment to itself, although the Subaru Crosstrek follows a similar ethos, albeit without the luxury pretense.

In terms of styling, the A3 Allroad shares cues with the sedan but has a raised ride height and increased ground clearance, making it more capable off-road. Other noticeable styling changes include a redesigned grille and bumpers, revised side sills, and standard roof rails.

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The charging port on the front left fender indicates the prototype has an electrified powertrain, most likely the same plug-in hybrid setup as the Audi A3 45 TFSI that combines a 1.4-liter TFSI engine with an electric motor to produce 242 hp. While the A3 45 TFSI is front-wheel drive, we would expect the off-road-focused Allroad to be all-wheel drive.

The name of the new high-riding A3 hasn't been confirmed yet, with some reports suggesting it will be called the Cityhopper and others claiming it will use the Allroad name. We'll find out when the new high-riding Audi A3 debuts next year. Sadly, the A3 Allroad is unlikely to be offered in the US as the A3 Sportback isn't sold here.

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