The second-gen Q3 is extra grown up and comes with a significantly better cabin.
Small is gorgeous. It’s manoeuverable too. Particularly in Central London the place it’s a must to deal with slim lanes and navigate via a labyrinth of highway works and diversions with one eye on Google Maps and the opposite on the highway. It definitely did assist that the Audi Q3 I’m piloting is good and compact, has a excessive seating place and good all-round visibility. As an city luxurious SUV, the Q3 is simply the best dimension in case you are primarily going to be behind the wheel, which is why it was fairly widespread in India till Audi discontinued it in early 2020.
And now, after an extended hole of two and a bit years, Audi has lastly introduced again the Q3 to India, with costs starting from Rs 44.89 lakh for the entry-level Premium Plus trim, and Rs 50.39 lakh for the higher-spec Know-how trim. The second-generation Q3, constructed on the MQB platform, was launched internationally in 2019 and therefore hasn’t come a day too quickly to an Indian showroom. Why then has it taken Audi so lengthy to deliver a automobile that’s seen via virtually half its life cycle? Blame it on COVID-19, a semiconductor scarcity, delays within the international rollout, or the truth that Audi India has spent the previous few years systematically streamlining its mannequin line-up that has put the Q3, properly, the final within the queue.
The Q3 completes the Q line-up in India and bookends the portfolio on the inexpensive finish. The Q2 has lengthy been discontinued and so, in impact, the Q3 is the entry level to Audi’s SUV vary in India. Actually, it’s the most affordable Audi you should purchase.
New Audi Q3: exterior
The brand new Q3 sports activities a extra aggressive design in comparison with its predecessor.
The brand new Q3 seems considerably completely different from the earlier Q3, each in and out, and it’s a contact greater too. So, let’s begin with the scale. The brand new Q3 is nearly 10cm longer than the earlier mannequin and whereas that will not appear quite a bit, most of that size has gone into elongating the cabin to release extra space for the passengers.
Boot house has gone up considerably to 530 litres – 70 litres greater than earlier than, in order that’s one additional bag you may squeeze in. You’ll be able to slide the 60:40 cut up rear seat ahead to launch much more boot house, however that solely is sensible if there’s nobody within the again seat.
The brand new Q3 boasts of an elevated boot house of 530 litres.
The design is extra aggressive than earlier than and attracts numerous styling cues from the larger SUVs within the Audi vary. The headlights, for instance, are impressed by the flagship Q8 and in contrast to the straightforward rectangular form of the earlier Q, the brand new mannequin’s LED lights are sharply lower and look extra advanced.
Audi’s trademark hexagonal grille is now a wider, single-frame and flanked by giant and angular ‘air intakes’ (they’re principally clean), which supplies the Q3 a lot wanted highway presence and the stance of a much bigger SUV.
The slim tail-lights intensify the width of the automobile.
Audi has jazzed up the flanks of the brand new Q3 as properly. The sooner automobile had a easy crease working throughout the perimeters, however the brand new automobile will get a extra pronounced shoulder and a muscular rear fender, which, together with 18-inch alloys, provides the Q3 a stable, planted stance. The slim tail-lights intensify the width of the automobile and include dynamic indicators which might be commonplace throughout the vary.
New Audi Q3: inside, options
The cabin, too, is an enormous enchancment over the past Q3 and extra according to Audi’s present fashions. It’s all screens now with a 10.25-inch ‘digital cockpit’ or configurable digital instrument cluster and a 10.1-inch display for the infotainment system. Since Audi’s shift to a full touchscreen cabin for all its vehicles, the MMI, or selector wheel which helps you to bodily choose features, is changed with a touchpad and that’s a pity.
The second-gen Q3 will get 10.25-inch digital dials.
It was a really well-developed interface that allowed you to toggle via features with out taking your eye off the highway. The nice factor is that the bodily buttons for the aircon controls have been retained and haven’t been buried within the touchscreen which is the pattern today.
Bodily controls for the HVAC have been retained.
For its compact dimensions, the Q3 is surprisingly spacious on the within and might accommodate 4 adults pretty simply. You sit good and upright and regardless of a scarcity of width within the comfortable cabin, you don’t really feel cramped or hemmed in. The cabin is properly crafted and up there with the larger Audis and the nice factor is you’re not shortchanged on high quality requirements simply since you’re paying much less for a smaller automobile.
Compact dimensions, however can seat 4 adults simply.
There’s no scarcity of cupboard space contained in the cabin. You get giant door bins, a big cubbyhole within the centre console and a wi-fi charging pad to take the largest smartphone. And when you’re sitting on the again, you may conveniently retailer your cellphone, or some small knickknacks in one of many cleverly designed slots on both facet of the rear seat.
Intelligent slots on the rear to retailer knick-knacks.
New Audi Q3: efficiency
The brand new Q3 handles like a typical Audi. The steering is mild and simple, the experience is beautifully cushioned and it fortunately flows within the thick of visitors, be it within the metropolis or on the motorway in a fortunately benign method with out thrilling or partaking the motive force. The experience was notably good on UK roads and although that’s not the atmosphere to attract any conclusions on experience consolation, going by our expertise with the most recent crop of Audi SUVs, we will safely say that the Q3 may presumably be the smoothest using SUV in its class.
India-spec Q3 will get Audi’s tried and examined 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine.
It was additionally not possible to evaluate the Q3’s engine and efficiency as a result of the check automobile we drove in London was a plug-in hybrid, powered by a 1.four litre petrol mill paired with an electrical motor. If something, driving in full electrical mode round London solely served to reaffirm my religion in hybrid expertise as bridge to full electrical. The Indian authorities doesn’t have the identical religion, and so hybrids don’t have any subsidies and are taxed as closely as common ICE vehicles, which is why Audi sees no profit in bringing hybrids to India.
What the Indian Q3 will get as an alternative is the tried-and-tested 190hp, 2-litre TFSI engine, which is the staple petrol motor of the Audi vary. Consider a beneficial power-to-weight ratio (the Q3 weighs simply 1,700kg) and the Q3 might be one of many quickest SUVs in its class too. The discontinued Q2 had the identical motor and was completely good to drive and the brand new Q3 may tackle the mantle of probably the most enjoyable to drive compact luxurious SUV. We simply can’t wait to drive it.