Audi’s Q3 Sportback line-up includes an 35 TFSI edition and upper-spec 40 TFSI S Line variant.
This is a SUV with all of its hard edges and softer lines right where they should be. It’s long and low and so looks dynamic and suitably sporty.
There are also nice extra touches like Sport (S) branding all over the place (including S embossing on each front seat’s backrest), contrast stitching, and pedals and footrest in stainless steel.
Audi Q3 Sportback 35 TFSI comes with 10-speaker premium audio, a 10.1-inch highb-resolution infotainment screen with embedded navigation and digital radio, plus the 10.25-inch widescreen digital instrument display. Drivers have the option of using one screen or both screens for navigation instructions, which include Google Earth imaging.
Additional phone charging points include one USB, one USB-C and one 12V socket in the front cabin, and two USB-C and one 12V socket for back seat passengers.
Rear passengers also get the convenience of air vents, and the back seat itself tilts and slides to create extra leg room or cargo space. The cargo hold is massive, about 1m by 1m of floor space, and a total capacity of 530L with the back seats in position (the same capacity as the Q3 SUV).
The Audi Q3 40 TFSI Quattro S Line gains an even sportier appearance, with Audi Sport trim front and rear, unique 20-inch wheels, as well as automatic high beam, automatic parking and heated electric front seats – in addition to its more potent engine.
The warranty for Audi cars is three years/unlimited kilometres and service intervals are 12 months or 15,000km, whichever comes first. Pre-paid service plans cost $1610 for three years and $2630 for five years.
This Q3 Sportback is powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine – producing 132kW at 4000-6200rpm and 320Nm at 1400rpm-3900rpm – and it’s teamed up with a seven-speed S Tronic automatic transmission.
The Audi Q3 35 TFSI it doesn’t feel sluggish despite what the numbers suggest (0–100km/h claim is 9.3 seconds, quicker than a Toyota Corolla, but a touch slower than a regular VW Golf). It felt fine in the bump and grind of city and suburban driving, and was easily able to go with the flow on freeways.
That Audi says buyers will likely adopt: the 1.4-litre 35 TFSI optioned with more luxury equipment. This combination will still cost less than the 2.0-litre 40 TFSI.
The rubber on both versions of the Audi Q3 Sportback we tested were relatively quiet on smooth bitumen, but got a little rowdy on certain coarse-chip surfaces. This is the compromise for having excellent grip, wet or dry.
The comfort over bumps for both models was surprisingly impressive given that low-profile tyres usually don’t absorb impacts well. Well-sorted suspension and cushioned tyres mean you get the best of both worlds.
Both automatic transmissions (the six-speed and seven-speed) are seamless once on the move, but have a slight hesitation on take-off from rest. This is not a fault, merely a trait of this type of design, and you soon adjust your driving style to accommodate.
Both engines have plenty of zip for daily driver use, but there is no doubt the turbo 2.0-litre will appeal to buyers who want a bit more oomph. With a claimed 0–100km/h time of 7.8 seconds.