Audi A3 sedan likely to sell in the US but chances are dim for Q3

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 9, 2011

Audi is likely to offer the production version of the Audi A3 sedan concept in the U.S. but it’s not yet clear if the Q3 compact crossover will make it to the U.S. as well. According to Peter Schwarzenbauer, Audi AG board member for sales and marketing, the dealers are pressuring Audi to include the Q3 in the U.S. lineup after they saw it at the NADA convention in San Francisco last month.

However, Audi has yet to decide if the Q3 will be sold in the U.S.

He estimates that if the approval is given for the crossover, it would take 12 to 15 months before it arrives. The Q3 is expected to arrive in Europe later this year, says Autonews.

The A3 sedan, which is based on the next-generation A3 hatchback, is far more probable to be made available in the U.S. If the sedan version gets the green light, it may arrive in the U.S. as early as 2013.

Schwarzenbauer said that from studying this specific segment around the world, it’s easy to conclude that the car is designed “with the U.S. and China in mind.”

He added that in these two countries, the segment is quite big. He pointed out that the A3 has not been a big seller in the U.S. because it is offered only as a five-door hatchback. In 2010, Audi only sold 6,558 A3s in the U.S.

The Audi A3 Sedan is introducing a liberal array of standard features. The restraint systems package includes a driver’s seat knee airbag. Among other featured inclusions on the DIS display are the efficiency program, a rest recommendation feature, and a gearshift indicator. The DIS color display will be available in the Ambiente and Ambition lines.

The Ambition line boasts of the following features: the Audi drive select system, 17-inch-alloy wheels, sport suspension, and sport seats. The Ambiente line features an LED lighting interior package, cruise control system, and a rear-parking assistant. Above these standard features, the Audi also includes options for convenience and comfort. These include the convenience key, panoramic glass sunroof, auxiliary heating, and adaptive lights. The xenon-based lighting system along with the MMI Navigation plus makes use of route data to light up the road, depending on the situation.

The premium class also includes options for driver assistance systems. For the A3 Sedan, its adaptive cruise control (ACC) keeps the unit at a desired distance from the car until it reaches speeds of 150 km/h (93.21 mph).

The control range is extended with the assistance package by up to 200 km/h (124.27 mph) as it combines multiple systems. The ACC, when combined with the S tronic, can offer low speeds with a stop&go function.

Audi active lane assist makes necessary electromechanical steering corrections to keep drivers within their lanes while lane changes are monitored by the Audi side assist rear radar sensors. The Audi active lane assist also has a video camera used to recognize traffic signs. Park assist displays the surroundings, offering a high-end solution for inconvenient parking. Plus, it can take over steering work from the driver in cases of parallel and perpendicular parking.

The Audi pre sense basic is another high-end safety system option. It integrates pre sense front in the adaptive cruise control system. To avoid rear-end collisions, the driver is warned by the system to use a staged reaction strategy.

Should the situation call for it, the system can initiate hard braking. In an emergency where the car speed is under 30 km/h (18.64 mph), the Audi pre sense front can manipulate the A3 Sedan’s brake to its full braking power. To avoid secondary collisions during a crash, the system will hinder the car from further travelling in an unrestrained manner.

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