Despite being a few years old now, the Audi RS3 Sportback is still one of the very best hot hatches on the market. Thanks to its 2.5 liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine, it makes a whopping 400 hp and 354 lb-ft of torque. For a hot hatch, that’s seriously impressive. It’s also one of the very fastest hatchbacks in the world. However, can it take on a significantly tuned Volkswagen Golf R?
In this drag race video from Carwow, we take a look at three cars; the Audi RS3, a Mountune-tuned Volkswagen Golf R and a standard Golf R for good measure. The point of this test is to see if the RS3 is worth the hefty additional cost over the Golf R, especially when you can tune it for much less money.
So the Mountune Golf R makes 360 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque, while the standard Golf R makes 300 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. So the Mountune car has the more torque than the RS3 but less power. However, it’s also a bit lighter, gets an Akrapovic exhaust and awesome Fifteen52 wheels, all for significantly less than the Audi. But on to the important bit — which is fastest?
In a straight line from a standing start, the Mountune Golf R and Audi RS3 crossed the quarter-mile mark in 12.7 seconds but the tuned Golf was an inch ahead, taking the win. Obviously, the standard Golf R was way behind, finishing in 13.4 seconds.
During a rolling drag race, with each car’s automatic gearbox in ‘D’, the Mountune-tuned car was also the quickest but by a more significant margin than before. However, when cruising in third gear at 50 mph, and keeping it in third gear, the RS3 actually was quite a bit faster. So it seems as if the tune allowed the Mountune car to shift down quicker when in ‘D’ but while already in gear the RS3’s extra power gave it an advantage.
However, it still seems that the Volkswagen Golf R with a Mountune tune is a much better value than the RS3. You get just a bit more car for a lot less money.