Audi Q3 2.0 TDI quattro review

Q3 2.0T TDI quattro® 130kW S tronic

Audi makes interesting cars and the Q3 is very interesting.  The Q3 is a Tiguan/ Golf/ A3 sized vehicle. You want to compare it to the VW Tiguan because it is so closely related, although Audi denies this.

It is a little performance machine with decent road height and a great view and a huge grin factor.

Put your foot down and point it in the direction you want to go and you know why this car exists. It is self explanatory.

As a mom’s taxi curb climber the Q3 fits the bill perfectly. Urban warrior mom material this.

Exterior

Lovely. Except for that face. It looks like a bulldog that has just run into the tyre it was chasing. Somewhat squished. The only saving grace is the lights, with integrated LED daytime running lights.

From the side and the back it is all smoothly flowing lines and steeply rakes windscreen and rear window. I like the normal waistline height. It is right on the button. It is a handsome car.

Interior 

This car, like all Audis, has a beautiful interior. It is a place where I was very comfortable. I like the layout of the dashboard and instruments and the way they feel and look. The subtle texture and colour contrasts of the materials used in the cabin lend it an air of opulence.

There are very few cup holders and storage places compared to its competition. Little things like somewhere to put your sunglasses seems to be a glaring omission.

Seat warmers seem to be a glaring omission on a little luxury car. In fact the seats are a little disappointing. Tiguan’s seats are more adjustable and more comfortable.

Driving impressions

The Q3 handles very sweetly. I found the ride a little harsh and bumpy, but not overly so.

The steering is a little too light and vague for windy roads, but in town it is fine.

Acceleration is nippy to say the least, especially in-gear pull away for overtaking.

Claimed fuel economy is 5.9 litres/ 100 km , acceleration 0 to 100km/h in 8.2 seconds, and top speed 212 km/h. I believe them about the acceleration and top speed. The fuel economy is very optimistic though. I got around 8.2 litres/ 100km around town and with 70% highway use.

The bad

The Q3 is a little expensive for its size and equipment levels to my mind. You can buy better value.

The ride is too firm and choppy, I think. It seems to magnify any road irregularity. The effect is almost harsh.

It does not have too many storage places like cup holders and sunglass trays.

The boot is actually tiny, unless you fold the rear seats down.

The Garmin GPS maps are woeful. It calls Cape Town International airport Tygerberg. Other Cape suburb names are as dodgy. Beware.

The good

I like the little central armrest for the back seat which can open up to load long items in the boot. Nice touch.

The performance is excellent and fuel economy not bad.

The fit and finish is Audi. It is superb.

The look of the Q3, apart from directly in front is to my mind one of the most successful of the present crop of SUV/ crossover type vehicles.

Summary

Competition

Tiguan 2.0 TDI 103kW 4MOTION Track & Field DSG                                        R383 400

Tiguan 2.0 TDI 81kW 4×2 Trend & Fun with BlueMotion Technology             R289 100

BMW x1  xDrive20i Innovations                                                                                R464 500

Land Rover Evoque 2,2 TD  Automatic                                                                     R582 995

Ford Kuga  2.5 Turbo AWD/5-Tronic Automatic                                                    R385 580

The Q3 is poised and well sized for most users. I liked the Q3, but I think the Tiguan and the Kuga are far better value.

If you can afford the petrol Q5 it is asolutely worth it to upgrade. A sublime motor car.

Costs

The car as tested was R502 950. (List price R431 500) This price includes Park assist, automatic lights and wipers and GPS. It excludes cruise control, seat warmers, fully adjustable seats and connections for your iPad.

Warranty 2 years with unlimited mileage.

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One thought on “Audi Q3 2.0 TDI quattro review

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