The Auto Trader expert verdict: ★★★★★ ★★★★★ 4.0
The Audi Q3 is a compact premium family SUV that fits into Audi’s range above the Q2 and below the Q5, Q7 and Q8. The Q3 Sportback version takes the standard Q3 and adds a more sporty design, with a lower roofline and longer body; the extra styling comes at a price premium of about £3,000 over a standard Q3. There’s a range of petrol and diesel engines and gearboxes, including a mild hybrid. You can choose from Sport, S Line, Edition 1 or Vorsprung trim levels.
Reasons to buy
- Sharp styling
- Great connectivity
- Smooth, quiet ride
At a glance
Running costs for a Audi Q3
The range of engine power outputs and option of four-wheel-drive means the running costs vary within the Q3 Sportback line-up, mostly due to the wide-ranging degrees of fuel consumption and road tax. While the weaker diesel engine and front-wheel drive will give you round about 40mpg, you’ll be looking at nearer 30mpg for the 45 TFSI quattro. Overall, including depreciation, runnings costs average out at about 80 pence per mile, which is at the high end of the industry average for petrol and diesel cars (electric car running costs are about half that). Having said, that, owners report “disappointing” running costs, but that looks to be down to fuel economy not meeting the quoted mpg figures, before the WLTP test, based on real-world driving, came in.
Reliability of a Audi Q3
As there is very little difference beyond styling changes between the Sportback and standard Q3, we’re quoting Q3 reliability here. Build quality has been highly rated for the Q3 since its launch, and the Q3 has crept up reliability charts since 2014, to sit just outside the top 10 models. Note there’s a 60,000-mile cap on warranty claims inside the three-year term.
Safety for a Audi Q3
Safety kit on the Audi Q3 Sportback is everything you’d expect: extensive and up to date. There’s lane-departure warning, emergency braking, rain-sensing windscreen wipers and traffic-sign recognition as standard. Opt for the quattro four-wheel drive version and you’ll get extra reassurance from the higher levels of grip and in wet and slippery conditions. Spend more money and you can buy park assist which help you move the car in tight spots, a 360-degree camera, adaptive cruise control which takes care of braking and acceleration, and cross traffic assist which alerts you if you’re about to reverse into traffic.
How comfortable is the Audi Q3
You get hatchback levels of leg room in the Q3, which means it’s not great for four tall adults, but the flip side of that is an SUV that’s easy to park round town, with good visibility. While the lower roofline looks slinky and sexy, you inevitably lose some head room inside as a result. Boot space, however, is still surprisingly impressive; the electrically lifting tailgate reveals a wide and deep space for luggage.
On the move, the Q3 Sportback is quiet and smooth, giving the car a strong premium character.
Features of the Audi Q3
All trim levels get Audi’s touchscreen and their “Virtual Cockpit” which is a digital display behind the steering wheel showing the normal two dials but also functions like satnav or radio on the display between the dials. It’s very smart and right up there with Audi competitors for premium graphics and quick information. You also get smartphone connectivity as standard.
Options include panoramic sunroof, multi-colour ambient lighting and park assist. Some of the features come as standard on the top-level Vorsprung trim.
Power for a Audi Q3
The initial engines and gearboxes on sale offer a choice broad enough to cater for most tastes.
There’s a 1.5-litre petrol with 150 horsepower, front wheel drive and a manual transmission, called the 35 TFSI; a 2.0-litre petrol with 230 horsepower, four-wheel drive (quattro) and automatic gearbox, called the 45 TFSI; and a 2.0-litre diesel with 150 horsepower called the 35 TDI, which comes with either a manual gearbox or automatic, and front-wheel or four-wheel drive. Sport suspension is standard.
We’ve tested the 45 TFSI, which is a good blend of power and economy, with Audi’s seamless S tronic automatic gearbox. A mild hybrid electric system will join the 1.5-litre petrol and automatic gearbox combo shortly, which recovers some of the energy internally but doesn’t require owners to do anything.