2022 Audi A3 Sportback 45 TFSI e debuts in Europe

The Audi A3 Sportback has yet to reach American shores. And yet, Europe is receiving a more potent version of Audi's little hatchback. The 2022 A3 Sportback 45 TFSI e debuts with the same hybrid powertrain as the 40 TFSI. But it now packs a meaner punch along with a host of new standard equipment.

Audi's newest A3 Sportback benefits from new software to optimize power output and efficiency. The 45 TFSI e has the same 1.4-liter turbocharged gas engine and single electric motor as the 40 TFSI. But with ECU mapping, it now 40 more horsepower and 37 more torques than before.

The little gasoline engine is good for 148 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Meanwhile, the electric motor produces 107 horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque. The motor rests neatly within the standard six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, drawing power from a 13 kWh battery pack.

Audi claims an all-electric range of 46 miles based on European NEDC test standards, which is 5 miles further than in the 40 TFSI model. With a combined output of around 255 horsepower, the A3 Sportback 45 TFSI e is a scorcher.

It accelerates to 60 mph in 6.8-seconds, while the lesser-endowed 40 TFSI only musters 7.6-seconds with a heavy right foot. It's not super quick, mind you, but it can outrun other small hybrids without breaking a sweat. In full-electric mode, the top speed is at 87 mph.

The new Audi A3 Sportback 45 TFSI e has four driving modes. Auto Hybrid is the default mode and allows the hybrid powertrain to coast, recuperate, or apply full power in any given situation. Battery Hold and Battery Charge mode enable the hybrid system to maintain battery charge at a constant level. At the same time, the EV button allows you to drive in full-electric mode whenever possible.

Also, the Audi A3 Sportback 45 TFSI e receives a new host of standard equipment. Audi's black styling package is standard fare and includes a Singleframe grille with high-gloss black inlays. It also gets bigger brakes, 17-inch wheels, a two-zone climate control system, sports seats, a convenience key, and Audi drive select.

The 2022 Audi A3 Sportback 45 TFSI e is initially available in Germany and the rest of Europe. Base prices start at €40,395 (around $50,310 at current exchange rates) before VAT and €6,750 subsidies. We have no word yet if Audi's compact hatchback will make it to U.S. shores (only the 2022 A3 sedan is sold here), but we're keeping our fingers crossed on this one.