A sure-fire way of adding excitement to any Audi is removing the "A" from its model name and replacing it with "RS." Take the RS4, RS5, RS6 and RS7 as proof of this fact. Of course, the transformation from "A" to "RS" wouldn't be complete with a huge bump in power, a far more sporting suspension, enhanced brakes and a more aggressive styling treatment.
That process appears to be well underway with the next RS3, which has once again been spotted testing in Germany. The larger wheels (the styles are mismatched, but the sizes look similar) are a good giveaway, as are the larger brakes and more aggressive front bumper, which sports larger intakes. The rear bumper has been modified, although we can't quite tell if the RS line's tell-tale oval exhausts have been fitted.
In the past, the RS3 mules we've heard have boasted the distinctive exhaust note of a five-cylinder engine. This particular car, though, has a more conventional exhaust note, of the sort you'd expect from a high-powered four-cylinder. Expect around 400 horsepower and Quattro all-wheel drive, with power distributed likely through some form of S-Tronic dual-clutch transmission.
Take a look up top for our gallery of spy shots, and keep an eye open for the RS3 in October, when it's expected to debut at the 2014 Paris Motor Show.