Images of the 2022 Audi RS3 sedan have leaked, just days after its German maker published full mechanical details for its upcoming hyper hatch.
Images shared by forum Cochespias (and reposted widely) show Audi's new flagship compact sedan in full, confirming the road-going RS3 will draw close parallels with the aggressive styling cues debuted on the new RS3 LMS race car earlier this year.
The surround housing Audi's Singleframe grille up front is now finished in black, flanked by LED headlights (featuring RS3-specific chequered-flag daytime-running light signatures) and large lower air intakes.
The RS3's wheel arches have been widened to house wider 19-inch wheels and tyres, with a slim brake cooling vent sitting behind the front arches. Audi Sport's signature oval-shaped exhaust tips feature prominently in the new rear bumper.
The photos don't provide a clear look at the hot A3 sedan's interior, though an image of the car's instrument cluster reveals an RS-specific view with a road (or runway) inspired rev counter.
While a full reveal for the new RS3 isn't slated to occur for another three to four weeks, Audi confirmed a host of details about the new model alongside camouflaged images earlier this week.
Under the bonnet sits the familiar 2.5-litre turbocharged five-cylinder petrol engine, developing 294kW and 500Nm – identical power (albeit across a broader rev range, 5600-7000rpm) but 20Nm more torque than its predecessor.
Drive is sent to all four wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and a new all-wheel drive system, featuring a new 'RS Torque Splitter' rear differential capable of sending 100 per cent of rear-axle torque to either wheel – click here to read more.
Audi claims a 3.8-second sprint from zero to 100km/h – one tenth quicker than its main rival, the Mercedes-AMG A45 S, and three tenths quicker than the outgoing RS3 – towards a top speed of 290km/h, when equipped with the RS Dynamic package and carbon-ceramic brakes.
A new vehicle dynamics controller computer system manages the seven drive modes are on offer – Comfort, Auto, Dynamic, Efficiency, RS Individual, RS Performance and RS Torque Rear – which vary the powertrain's behaviour, rear differential settings, steering weight, adaptive damper stiffness and exhaust flap position.
While the first five modes will be familiar to owners of existing Audi RS products, the latter duo are new.
RS Performance optimises the car's characteristics to ensure it doesn't oversteer nor understeer – rather staying neutral through corners – while RS Torque Rear apportions 100 per cent of rear-axle torque to the outside wheel, breaking traction and pushing the car into an electronically-assisted slide.
The RS3 sits 10mm lower than a four-cylinder S3 – or 25mm lower than a regular A3 – thanks to unique suspension geometry and tuned adaptive dampers, with Audi claiming there's nearly one additional degree of negative camber on the front axle versus a standard A3.
The 19-inch Y-spoke alloy wheels can be wrapped in semi-slick Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R tyres as an option – the latter shared with high-performance, high-performance machinery from the McLaren Senna to Australia's own HSV GTSR W1.
A three-mode variable steering system is also on offer, along with two stability control modes.
The 2022 Audi RS3 hatch and sedan duo is expected to be unveiled in mid-July. Stay tuned to CarAdvice for the full reveal.