Form an orderly Q for new Audi
Audi Q3 2.0 TDi 120bhp S-Line
The Qs are getting longer and longer at Audi but the wait is over for the revised Q3 and the new Q7. This week the German premium brand announced pricing and spec for its baby SUV.
Yet another model to receive a mid-life makeover, the Q3 has been given a few Botox injections to the front and rear and a new-and-improved engine line-up has been added to the range.
Ahead of the announcement this week, we got behind the wheel a couple of weeks ago to see what all the fuss was about.
Again, to the untrained eye there is very little to distinguish it from the outgoing model.
Apart from new LED headlights and tail lights and a new grille, which do admittedly make a massive difference, and a couple of new colours — Hainan and Utopia Blue — there is very little to set it apart.
On the inside, the cabin is well laid out and spacious for five adults. Head room is ample, but leg room is a tad tight if you are sitting behind a six-foot plus driver.
The pop-up MMI infotainment system is very neat and folds away with a simple press down into the dashboard.
And unlike most of the other Audis we have driven, the controls for it sit in the centre console, as opposed to down where the parking brake and gear selector normally sit, making it more user friendly.
Boot space, too, is quite impressive for those holidays or weekend away trips and you won’t be stuck for space with between 460 and 1,365 litres on offer with the seats down.
The standard Q3 in SE specification comes equipped with a generous host of features, including xenon headlights; front and rear parking sensors; cruise control; a multi-function leather steering wheel; and electric lumbar support for extra comfort.
Sitting above the SE model is the sporty S Line model which features upgraded 18-inch alloys, S Line Bumpers in full body paint finish, S line Sports suspension and Leather and Cloth Sports Seats for a premium of €2,800 over the SE model.
Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive technology, which delivers increased traction and enhanced driving performance, and an S tronic automatic transmission, are available on selected engines at a premium of €2,200 and €2,400 respectively.
Even better news for customers is the engine line-up, with CO2 figures which are now up to 17 per cent lower than on the previous model.
On the road, the Q3 is a joy to drive. We tested out the 2.0-litre TDi engine and it certainly doesn’t lack for power.
We did, however, find it slightly loud for a modern-day diesel engine and the new 1.4-litre petrol should not be overlooked for a quieter, smoother ride.
This powerful 1.4TFSI 150bhp petrol engine with cylinder-on-demand technology returns an impressive claimed figure of 5.5l/100km and bears the new ‘ultra’ badge.
Our test car was fitted with the six-speed manual gearbox, but the seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch automatic would be the pick of the bunch for us every time.
The Q3 comes in front-wheel drive and Audi’s all-wheel drive Quattro system for those who need to round up the sheep.
But as this SUV will mainly tackle the school and supermarket car parks the two-wheel drive is more than enough for potential Irish buyers.
The new Audi Q3 is now on sale with a starting price of €36,750 OTR, Audi Ireland has announced.
As part of Audi’s Inspiration sales event, finance is also now available from €369 per month with 3.9 per cent APR with the usual Ts&Cs, as they say in marketing, thrown in.
Robbie Farrell and Paul Keown