Will Audi’s Hardcore Lineup Finally Make A Home In The US?


Automaker’s latest entry may be a sign for the future.

Audi has created some incredible high-performance machines featuring the coveted “RS” badge, and in almost every single case these have remained forbidden fruit in the US. The German automaker plans to change that by bringing its latest pumped up sedan—the Audi RS3—across the Atlantic Ocean, and we're hopeful that this could be the start to a bright future for fast Audis in America.

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It’s no secret that Audi is feeling the heat from the diesel scandal, which is an ongoing matter that happens to also include Volkswagen and Porsche. So while the majority of enthusiasts are thrilled to see the beastly sedan come to the US, it’s hard to look past the fact that Audi has its own agenda for the RS3. While the German automaker has hitherto deemed America a market unworthy of its presence, why has Audi now decided to serve up an RS model? One word: sales. Audi and Volkswagen, and even Porsche to some extent, will be feeling the sting from the emissions scandal. Dealers, beloved fans and average Joes alike are upset with these brands, and for good reason

None of the automakers have come out with a fix for its emissions-cheating cars yet, but Audi has found another way around the problem—offering a whole new set of cars to a different set of buyers. You have to be a power-craved lunatic to get behind the wheel of a RS-badged model as the high-performance vehicles are clearly aimed at enthusiasts. Reaching out to a new market would increase sales and bring in some positive publicity for the automaker—win, win. Another reason for bringing the RS3 over is because of the recent influx of small, high-performance cars.

Cars like the BMW M2, Ford Focus RS and Mercedes-AMG CLA45 could use some more competition, which is exactly what the RS3 plans to give them. In addition to being a worthy competitor for America’s small, high-performance models, this is most likely Audi’s attempt at seeing how profitable its lineup of RS models could be. Currently, there are only two RS models on sale in the US—the RS7 and RS5—while Britain is lucky enough to get six RS-branded models. If the RS3 sells like hotcakes, it would be safe to assume that Audi would reconsider bringing more RS-badged models over. It’s not the best time to be an Audi enthusiast, but the RS3 is the light at the end of the tunnel for the automaker. An extremely bright light.

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