Audi is introducing two new engines to the A3 line-up in Europe, both focusing on a significant improvement in efficiency. The engines are the same size – 1.6-liters – and are both diesel-powered TDIs. The more powerful of the two engines, at 105 horsepower, will achieve over 57 mpg, well into and above the range of gasoline-powered hybrid cars. This engine uses the same start/stop and energy recovery system as the A4 2.0 TDI e, which shuts off the engine when stopped and uses regenerative braking to recover energy normally lost when slowing down. This engine will propel the lightweight A3 from 0-62 mph in 11.4 seconds, which isn’t bad for a car that gets 57 mpg.
The other newly available engine is also a 1.6-liter TDI, but produces only 90 hp, and gets slightly less fuel economy at 52 mpg. This engine does not use the same start/stop and energy recovery system as the more powerful engine, but still gets good fuel economy, and has a decent 170 lb-ft of torque which gives it a 0-62 mph time of 12.9 seconds.
The 90 hp version will start at 22,550 Euros ($32,242 USD,) and the 105 hp car will be 23,550 Euros ($33,672 USD.) I couldn’t see any reason to choose the 90 hp version over the 105 hp alternative, especially with only a 1,000 Euro price difference. The engines will be available for order immediately.
Between now and the end of 2010, Audi will be investing $1 billion in 30 new dealerships, which will be implementing their new “Terminal” design. Explained as “Efficient, sporty, luxurious, and environmentally conscious ‘terminal’ architecture for Audi dealerships echoes vehicle designs.” The new dealerships will focus on every aspect of design, from flowers to coffee cups.
They will be designed to minimize wasted space and use natural lighting, which will end up saving Audi 30-40% on expenses to run the dealership. The furniture and accessories within the dealerships are all custom made to match the terminal style as well. Each terminal dealership will individually apply for LEED certification, which will help them further increase efficiency in the future. Expect the first terminal dealers to open in Los Angeles and Atlanta, with others to follow.
More images and a video below: