Not sure where you're getting the 280hp figure from. The MQB platform will use two new engines, which are modular units:
EA211 - 4 Cylinder Petrol:
EA288 - 4 Cylinder Diesel:
I speculate that the North American A3 will utilize the 1.8T engine producing 180hp as not to overshadow the A4's 2.0T.
The top-spec Audi S3 will get a turbocharged 2.0-liter four with 280 hp, while the hard-core RS3 will get a 350-hp turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-five and quattro all-wheel drive. Both a manual and S-tronc dual-clutch transmissions will be on offer.
It doesn't say either of the above will come to the U.S.
I don't see this car having 180 hp as the GLI/GTI still have the 200. This article says the new GTI will have 230 hp. Seems like an article somewhere is off.
This article - http://www.topgear.com/uk/car-news/n...k-7-2012-01-30
The big news here on the engines is the modular design. This means significantly reduced time and expense for final assembly, increased production line flexibility and in theory, reduced cost/time for troubleshooting and repair in the future.
On a related note, there's talk of the Gen 3 EA888 for the GTI. I imagine the GTI and this car will share the same engine making it a relevant discussion here. I'd be shocked if VW is readying two new, distinct engines that are so similar. What's up here? Is EA211 the specific code for the third gen EA888?
Different names for the same thing?
Whatever the engine is called, it looks like the MK7 GTI will have somewhere between 220-240 hp and nearly 260 tq. Hoping the A3 makes the same power.
If VW / Audi are dropping 220 lbs from the GTI, (3034 down to ~ 2,800 lbs!!!), and speculating here...based off current A3 numbers, under 3,200 lbs for a Quattro A3 sedan...start talking about a S3 sedan and you aren't going to be too far off EVO X performance.
Start dreaming of a RS3 with the new light weight chassis and 2.5T, and I don't think there will be a car with 4 doors on this planet I would want more.