Less than a year after BMW set a record at the Nurburgring for the fastest production car in the compact class, Audi has now stolen the spotlight with the new RS3. The 2025 RS3 completed the challenging course in an impressive 7 minutes and 33.12 seconds, shaving off more than five seconds from the previous record. Behind the wheel was racing and development driver Frank Stippler, equipped with Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R semi-slick tires, ceramic brakes, a stiffer RS-spec adaptive suspension, and a retuned chassis.

Despite having more power, the facelifted RS3 features a slightly detuned version of the 2.5 TFSI engine with 395 horsepower in Europe. In the United States, the pre-facelift RS3 boasts 401 hp. Audi Sport boss Sebastian Grams had hinted at additional power in the future, but for now, the focus is on sharpening the current products. The special edition RS3 Performance Edition, with 401 hp, was mentioned as a limited edition model not available in America.

It is possible that a hotter derivative based on the new RS3 could be in the works, utilizing the ultimate version of the inline-five engine. This move may be necessary as Audi has suggested that the engine may need enhancements to meet stricter emissions regulations in the future. While Americans enjoy more power as standard, Europeans have the option of a five-door hatchback as a more luxurious alternative to the Volkswagen Golf R.

The official reveal of the 2025 RS3 is expected in the coming weeks, with orders opening in Europe in late August and deliveries beginning in October. With the impressive performance at the Nurburgring, the new RS3 is set to make a mark in the compact car segment, showcasing Audi’s commitment to innovation and excellence in engineering.