Audi A3 models get more efficient 2.0-liter engine for 2017

The new TFSI mill boasts more power and a higher combined mpg rating than the outgoing 1.8-liter engine.

Audi's new 2.0-liter TFSI engine is now heading to the A3 Sedan and Cabriolet for the 2017 model year.

The new powerplant is both more powerful and more efficient than Audi's venerable 1.8T, previously offered on front-wheel-drive A3 variants. Drivers can expect an extra 16 horsepower and 21 lb-ft of torque, bringing total output up to 186 ponies and 221 lb-ft.

The extra oomph is delivered via a new seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, helping the sedan hit 60 mph in 6.6 seconds -- 0.6 faster than the previous model.

The engine takes advantage of a new combustion tuning and higher compression ratio, resulting in an EPA-estimated combined rating of 29 mpg. The outgoing 1.8T package was rated at 27 mpg combined.

The 2017 refresh boasts a revised exterior with new grilles, improved headlights and other styling tweaks. The cabin remains mostly unchanged, aside from Audi's 12.3-inch virtual cockpit system that replaces the traditional instrument cluster.

Due to arrive in showrooms this fall, the 2017 A3s will be a few hundred dollars more expensive than the 2016 editions. The sedan now starts at $32,150 (including $950 freight) and the convertible fetches $38,550.

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