2016 audi s3 Model Overview
New for 2016
The 2016 Audi S3 is the high-performance variant of the A3 compact luxury sedan and comes standard with the brand’s Quattro all-wheel drive system.
A turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4 rated at 292 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque is the only engine available in the 2016 S3 and it’s mated to a six-speed twin-clutch automatic transmission. Even though it has nearly 300 hp, the S3 is surprisingly fuel efficient at 23/31 mpg city/highway.
There’s seating for up to five passengers in the S3, however, the rear seats are cramped, especially for taller adults. Trunk space is on the small side at 10 cubic feet, but it can be expanded thanks to its standard 60/40 split-folding rear seats.
Standard safety features include dual front, front-side, and side curtain airbags. Dual knee airbags for the driver and front passenger are standard while rear side airbags are optional in both Premium Plus and Prestige trims. Audi Pre-Sense basic, a forward collision warning system, is standard. Blind spot warning and lane assist are available as part of the Driver Assistance package in the Premium Plus grade. In the Prestige trim, the Advanced Technology package adds active lane assist, adaptive cruise control, and Audi Pre Sense Front, which includes automatic forward emergency braking.
The NHTSA gave the 2016 S3 a five-star overall safety score (out of a possible five stars) and a Top Safety Pick+ designation from the IIHS after it received a Good score in five crash tests (Good is the highest possible score). In front crash prevention, the S3 received an Advanced rating after it was able to avoid a 12-mph collision (front crash prevention ratings include Basic, Advanced, and Superior).
Trims, Packages, and What’s Standard
The base Premium Plus trim level comes with automatic HID headlights with LED accents, dual-zone climate control, leather upholstery, Bluetooth connectivity, Audi Drive Select, heated front seats, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, Audi Pre Sense Basic, keyless entry and start, a flat-bottom steering wheel, and a panoramic sunroof. Full LED headlights, the Bang & Olufsen audio system, and navigation are available as standalone options while a rearview camera is part of the Driver Assistance package. The Convenience package adds power heated side mirrors with anti-glare on the driver’s side, the lighting package, and an interior mirror with a compass. Opting for the range-topping Prestige trim adds additionally standard features including navigation, the Bang & Olufsen sound system, full LED headlights, and all the features found in the Convenience and Driver Assistance packages from the Premium Plus grade.
Both trim levels are available with the S Sport Seat package, which add sports seats with a diamond stitch pattern and better support for spirited driving. The 19-inch Performance packages adds 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in summer performance tires and Audi Magnetic Ride.
What We Think
The 2016 Audi S3 provides plenty of performance in a small package. In a 2015 First Test review, we said that the S3 possesses high dynamic capability, making it confidence inspiring and easy to hustle. Additionally, the S3’s interior, despite its conservative design, is simple to use, modern and expensive, making it more user-friendly than units found in competitors like the Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG. In a 2015 First Drive review, we noted that the S3’s standard all-wheel drive system proved its worth in both dry and wet conditions, offering excellent grip in turns; however, the steering is lacking in feel.
The S3’s turbo-four is shared with the Golf R and is the most potent version of the EA888 family of 2.0-liter turbo I-4s.
- Well-built interior
- Excellent performance and handling
- Surprisingly fuel efficient
You Won’t Like:
- Steering feel is somewhat lacking
- Trunk space is on the small side