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The 2021 Audi A3 Sportback has everyone talking. Consumers got a first-look preview, recently, of this sporty little car, along with photos and specs. There are some impressive revisions coming for the fourth generation A3, compact vehicle.

As excited as fans might be for this one, U.S. Audi enthusiasts shouldn’t hold their breath for it to land in our neck of the woods. The Sportback might just be one of those versions reserved for European release.

What we know so far about the Sportback

This little compact hatch is an upgraded version of the A3, with added tech, style, and personality. It will share the same platform with the previous model, but new extras are rolled in, including suspension enhancements, speed-sensitive steering, and all-wheel drive availability.

As part of the first-look, Audi fans will have a few powertrain configurations from which to choose. There will be a 1.5L engine with 148 horses, and a turbo-diesel 2.0L with 114 or 148 horsepower. Available is a six-speed manual transmission or a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic.

A Sportback has to be sporty, right?

The new speed-sensitive steering system for the 2021 Audi A3’s more sporty trims, mean there is electronic assistance based on the position of the steering wheel. This smart-reaction tech will translate to easier maneuverability when navigating a parking lot, and more weighted when straight-shot highway driving.

The upgraded suspension damping, with varying controls, is standard, too. It will use sensors to measure how the occupants feel relevant to the vehicle moving when stepping on the gas. What it all really means is it’s just one more way the A3 Sportback will feel sporty and fun to drive.

How the experts feel about the 2021 Audi A3 Sportback

The folks at Automobile Magazine love the Sportback name, citing that calling a four-door car a coupe, simply based on the vehicle’s height and roofline, is a trap. Audi didn’t fall for that nonsense and kept with “sedans-that-would-be-coupes” now transform to be a Sportbacks.

A name, they say, is far more suitable. The MotorTrend experts share they like the A3 Sportback, despite its appearance closely resembles that of its predecessor. They say it’s a ‘dashing compact luxury hatch’ and express some appreciation for the more aggressive-looking front end, sophisticated back end, and curvy body panels.

They also say the pixel array of LED light, gives the headlamps a unique look overall. Say goodbye to the circular vents and obscure infotainment screen. Say hello to a more occupant-friendly layout, including an in-dash centered 10.1-inch standard touchscreen.

Don’t hold your breath for U.S. availability


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Per the release, Europe will start seeing the 2021 A3 Sportback in May of this year. Audi is already registering Germany-based preorders. Those opting in early will have access to tons of optional equipment, including the Edition One model.

However, this hatch version isn’t expected to land stateside. The fourth-generation A3 sedan for 2021 is planned for U.S. release within the next year. Many are guessing the American-bound A3 versions won’t offer the diesel engines. And, those slated for a European landing will more than likely have Sportback options for more power, including a possible bump to S3 or RS3.

Unfortunately, the 2021 Audi A3 Sportback might only get to hit pavement overseas. That’s not to say we won’t have our own fun with a sedan version here in the U.S. Considering Audi is making upgrades throughout, even our American release will more than likely have plenty of exciting features, too. For now, we’ll have to wait until May and, even then, live vicariously through the Europeans for an A3 Sportback adventure.