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Audi RS 3 confirmed, to take on Mercedes-Benz CLA 45 AMG in Stateside proxy war

Audi RS 3 front

Aud's RS 3 will be the 1,400th car built on the all-new MQB platform.

I have an expensive, new addiction: Audi RS models. And delightfully for me, I am about to get another fix.

For many, many years, BMW’s M models held precedence in my heart. Now, however, the wily Audi engineers have wriggled their way into my soul, building cars that are exceptionally precise and vibrant motoring machines. Unlike their BMW M competitors, Audi RS models just felt a bit livelier, a bit less dead inside.

For a long time, the rear-drive BMW 1 Series reigned supreme in the entry-level German performance realm. But then Mercedes unveiled the CLA 250 and the knockabout CLA 45 AMG models. Suddenly, the game was on.

Audi quickly answered with all-new A3 and S3 models. Neither, however, quite matched the power prowess of the CLA 45 AMG. Quick to solve that oversight, the Bavarians have been back to the drawing board and come back with an all-new RS 3. I’m just hoping to Yahweh that we’ll see it Stateside.

Speaking with Autocar, Audi brass admitted the RS 3 in production will sport the same 2.5-liter five-cylinder turbo under the hood of the S3 but likely turned up to elf. I will go ahead and estimate 360 horsepower sent to all four wheels through a DSG seven-speed automatic.

Yes, there has been an RS 3 in Europe for many years, but the new one will be based on the MQB platform that will underpin, well, just about everything from the new mk7 Golf to the Lamborghini Urus. While this doesn’t necessarily indicate we’ll see it here in States, Audi won’t want Mercedes to have its run of the New World, though, so I am sure Audi will send the RS 3 over to America to fight its proxy war with the CLA 45 AMG here on U.S. soil.