Audi Q3 2021 Review
You would imagine that given the outstanding popularity of a product like a Volkswagen Tiguan, given its size, packaging, and performance, that any model based upon it would also do well. In the case of the Audi Q3, life hasn’t been quite as fair – the model shares its roots with the aforementioned Tiguan, but doesn’t seem to work as fluidly when applied with some Audi technology and aesthetics.
This is not the fault of the Audi Q3, of course. This compact crossover SUV was introduced in its first generation back in 2011, with a mid-life facelift coming forth in 2014, and production ending in 2018. It was at this time that the second generation model had been launched, with the regular variant being introduced locally in 2019, and a sportback variant in 2020.
As is the case with the Audi Q5 and Q5 Sportback, the Q3 Sportback is essentially a coupe-esque variant of the regular Q3 SUV. The roofline is the most major difference, although in our Malaysian market there has also been the rather significant decision to introduce each model with a completely different powertrain.
These two variants of the Audi Q3 have persisted locally until today, and the most current introductions of sales tax exemptions has only served to adjust the local pricing of these models.
Audi Q3 2021 Specifications
The powertrains that Audi utilizes in their products are fairly common and repeated, even across the larger Volkswagen Group. In the case of the entry level Audi Q3, it packs a 1.4 TFSI engine which is pretty much identical to the one found in the Volkswagen Tiguan 1.4 TSI. The engine in this application makes a similar 150 hp and 250 Nm of torque, delivering drive exclusively to the front wheels through a six-speed, wet dual-clutch type automatic transmission.
This is also the case for the Q3 Sportback, which comes with a 2.0 TFSI quattro powertrain. The engine is a turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol unit that makes 180 hp and 320 Nm of torque – similar to the powertrain found in the mid-spec Audi A4 2.0 TFSIs of old. In this case the transmission is a seven-speed dual-clutch type automatic unit, splitting power across all four wheels thanks to the quattro all-wheel drive system.
Dimensionally, the only difference between the two variants is the height: 1,585 mm for the regular Q3 form, and 1,557 mm for the Q3 Sportback with its sharper roofline. All other dimensions are identical, with a wheelbase of 2,680 mm, a length of 4,485 mm, and a width of 1,856 mm. It isn’t the largest vehicle within its class, but it certainly isn’t compact by any measure either.
Audi Q3 2021 Exterior
The most immediate difference between the variants of the Audi Q3 and Q3 Sportback has to be the roofline, with the latter looking immediately sportier and sharper given the taper of the roofline towards the rear. Beyond this, however, there aren’t a whole lot of differences – 18-inch wheels for the Q3 and 19-inch wheels for the Q3 Sportback, roof rails in anodized aluminium for both models, and those signature Audi daytime running lights in LED for both models as well.
Audi Q3 2021 Interior
On the inside, the Audi Q3 can feel very business focused – it doesn’t quite have the more elegant layout for the centre console and shifter that other Audi products have, although the switchgear is resolutely Audi. Sombre tones will greet you, with black on black on black around the cabin, and brushed aluminium inserts for the trim elements. Both variants of the Audi Q3 are identical in this respect.
Audi Q3 2021 Safety Features
Safety is an area in which the Audi Q3 does barely adequately, as both variants make do with the regular electronic safety aids like stability control and traction control, as well as ABS with EBD and brake assist. Unfortunately, neither variant of the Q3 gets advanced safety systems like autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist and the like – which is a sore point considering Audi offers these functions with their other products, and many rivals in class come with these functions as standard.
Audi Q3 2021 Strengths & Weakness
If you’re a big fan of the Audi brand and what it stands for, both in terms of product packaging and styling, then the Q3 is a perfect entry-level SUV for a family that’s starting out. It doesn’t make you to commit to an aggressively large vehicle, but provides a little more practicality and space than you would get in a sedan or hatchback equivalent.
Unfortunately, you really have to be a fan of the brand in order to see the appeal – especially when you consider that the pricing of the Audi Q3 is incredibly uncompetitive. Even the positioning of the two variants can be hard to rationalize – the Sportback comes with the more potent powertrain option but is barely RM 40,000 more than the regular Q3. Another glaring omission is the lack of advanced driver assistance systems, which should come as standard on any vehicle considering even entry-level products have such features.
Audi Q3 2021 Price
Pricing for the Audi Q3 doesn’t necessarily come cheap, even within its segment, but this is understandable given its scarcity. The more expensive variant in the form of the Q3 Sportback 2.0 TFSI quattro will set you back a good RM 311,352.49, inclusive of current exemptions and everything you need to get on the road short of insurance.
In the case of the entry level variant, the Q3 advanced 1.4 TFSI S tronic will cost you RM 275,733.75 once again inclusive of all items needed to get the car on the road short of insurance, and with the current sales tax exemptions in place. Both models get a five-year, unlimited mileage warranty.
Audi Q3 2021 Features
Between the two variants, the brunt of the feature list is identical. Both variants of the Audi Q3 get ambient lighting throughout the cabin, two-zone automatic climate control, LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, and LED tail lights. The Audi Virtual Cockpit plus is also included as standard, as is the MMI Navigation Plus with MMI touch for the infotainment system.
Where the Q3 Sportback sets itself apart is with the additional items in the form of cruise control, Audi parking system plus with rear view camera, and progressive steering. This isn’t the most comprehensive of option additions, but the price difference between the two variants can largely be attributed to the differences in powertrain.
Audi Q3 2021 Fuel Consumption
The manufacturer quoted fuel consumption figure for the Audi Q3 varies depending on the variant you choose. In the case of the Q3 advanced 1.4 TFSI S tronic, the quoted consumption figure is 7.2 litres per 100 kilometres, which translates to roughly 13.9 kilometres per litre.
As for the Q3 Sportback 2.0 TFSI quattro, the figure is a slightly thirstier 8.1 litres per 100 kilometres, or roughly 12.3 kilometres per litre. In both cases, it is important to remember that these are turbocharged vehicles and your actual consumption may vary quite significantly depending on the way you drive. Ultimately however, the figures aren’t altogether absurd considering the high air resistance and rolling resistance of SUVs.
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- Body Type: SUV
- Transmission: Automatic
- Engine Capacity: 1395 cc - 1984 cc
- Fuel Type: petrol
- Seat Capacity: 5 - 7
- Price: RM 240,516 - RM 260,555
13 Oct 2020
Review: Audi Q3 1.4 TFSI S-Tronic – Exclusivity VS Individuality, Can We Have Both?
Within minutes of driving the Q3, everything just feels like home. Given the car’s interior ergonomics, good visibility, and relatively compact size – means it starts to wrap around your driving ability in pretty quick order. With easily judged body edges, and a superb camera system aiding your parking, it’s also easy to get the Q3 in and out of a mall carpark. I have to confess, that I never drove the Q3 in anger, perhaps a further sign of greying hair and getting older is that I’m happy to meander around at 60 km/h within city limits. This does, however; gives one appreciation for the quietness and refinement of the Q3’s cabin space, surely a by-product of its build quality and body construction.View full review
User Review of Audi Q3
Great SUV For The Price