Coupé-like styling meets compact luxury SUV in the all-new Audi Q3 Sportback – due to arrive Down Under in the first half of next year.

24 July, 2019

The all-new Audi Q3 Sportback is the first compact crossover vehicle for Audi

Audi has taken the covers of an all-new model – the Audi Q3 Sportback. Joining its sibling the Q3 in the compact luxury SUV class, this new model is the first compact crossover vehicle for Audi and will not only appeal to the significant number of Q3 customers, but ignite the imagination of a new group of customers.

The proposition is compelling, taking the practicality of a compact SUV and marrying it with the styling and performance more commonly associated with a coupé.

The Audi design language and the Sportback concept work perfectly with the Q3 architecture, giving it at once a familiar look but with its own distinctive character.

There is no missing the sporty nature of the Q3 Sportback, with its black octagonal Singleframe grille, trapezoidal air inlets and flat headlights defining the front end, then the sweeping, coupé-like silhouette giving it an even more sporting character. The low roofline gives way to flat D‑pillars and ends in a roof edge spoiler giving the impression of length and indeed providing outstanding interior accommodation and storage. At 4.50m long, 1.84m wide and 1.56m high, it has a wheelbase of 2.68m, making it compact enough for big city driving, but with ample space and size for comfortable long haul trips.

The flared ‘quattro blisters’ featured on the latest Audi models have also been beautifully incorporated into the design giving the4 Q3 Sportback a wider, more muscular stance, emphasised further by the tapered rear end treatment and reversing lights.

Elegant, certainly, but with an undeniable attitude and character that sets it apart.

The Q3 Sportback has the performance and handling that go with the dynamic design, coming to market with both a petrol and a diesel engine. The first, a 2.0 TFSI unit in the Q3 Sportback 45 TFSI quattro S tronic produces 169kW, while the Q3 Sportback 35 TDI S tronic boasts output of 110kW and will also be available with a manual transmission and quattro drive.

Other engines will follow including a more powerful diesel and an entry-level petrol engine, which works together with a 48 V mild-hybrid system. 

In the top engines, the quattro all-wheel drive is standard – its central component a hydraulic multi-plate clutch on the rear axle. Its electronic management combines outstanding stability and strong traction for superior traction in all conditions and at the limits of performance.

The Q3 Sportback also features progressive steering and sports suspension. Customers can order the suspension with damper control, which further increases the range between dynamism and comfort. Depending on the driving situation, road condition and personal preferences, the driver can vary the car’s characteristics via the standard dynamic handling system, Audi drive select, in six profiles, including the offroad mode. 

In addition to the engine and transmission set-up, this system also influences the electronically adjustable shock absorbers and the steering assistance. As an option, the hill descent control can offer support, keeping the speed selected by the driver constant on an incline greater than six percent.

As comfortable in the city as it is on the open road or even off-road, the Q3 Sportback is a lifestyle allrounder

Interior accommodation is generous and beautifully executed

Interior accommodation and appointment are strong components of the Audi Q3 Sportback. The front seats – electrically adjustable and heated on request – offer a sporty position and a high level of comfort. Depending on the equipment, there are sport seats with contrasting stitching and coloured stripes along the side panels.

The rear seating can be adjusted 130mm longitudinally and accommodates space for three people. For additional comfort, the backrests are divided into three sections and their inclination can be adjusted in seven stages.

Storage for luggage is 530l and can be increased to 1400l with the rear seats lowered, while the loading floor can be adjusted to two levels and the rear shelf is located beneath it. An electric tailgate, operated with a foot motion is also available as an option. 

Equipment is impressive even on the base model, with a digital instrument cluster with a 10.25-inch screen diagonal, which the driver operates using the multifunction steering wheel. In the top-of-the-line system, MMI navigation plus, the displays appear in the Audi virtual cockpit, which offers many additional functions. A touch display measuring 10.1 inches is positioned in the centre of the instrument panel and boasts acoustic feedback. On request, the 12.3-inch Audi virtual cockpit plus is available with three selectable layouts.

The flat menu structure is complemented by a control unit that uses natural language and navigation destinations entered into the MMI search are based on free text input. The system also recognises the driver’s most frequent destinations and can generate suggestions also taking into account traffic load and time of day.

Together with MMI navigation plus, the online services of Audi connect are made available on board at LTE Advanced speed via a permanently installed SIM card. This includes online traffic information and the online points of interest service, which complements route guidance with photos, opening hours, and user evaluations. The Q3 Sportback also receives and provides information about parking spaces on the roadside, hazard areas and speed limits, while traffic light information is a new feature among the Car-to-X services. Here the car receives data from a city’s traffic computer, giving the driver information about traffic light phases in the Audi virtual cockpit (this offering is initially available in individual European cities and will be gradually extended depending on the infrastructure in the urban area). 

Another new feature is the cloud-based Amazon voice service Alexa, which streams music and audio books and also offers access to more than 80,000 Alexa Skills. Navigation with Google Earth™ and the hybrid radio, which automatically switches between FM, DAB and online streaming depending on the reception conditions, also forms part of the Audi connect navigation & infotainment plus package.

The free myAudi App and the Audi smartphone interface ensure interconnectivity between the car and smartphone and integrates Android and iOS smartphones into the on-board infotainment system. The content of the smartphone is shown in the MMI display via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, and no cables are required if the top infotainment system is used with an iPhone. The Audi phone box and the Bang & Olufsen Premium Sound System with virtual 3D sound round off this comprehensive offer. 

Technology and connectivity in the Q3 Sportback is state-of-the-art

The Q3 Sportback will join the other members of the Audi Q family when it arrives in Australia in the first half of 2020

Safety too is a priority with Q3 Sportback, with systems such as lane departure warning and the lane change warning standard equipment. 

The adaptive cruise assist is a highlight of the optional systems, taking the burden off the driver during longitudinal and lateral guidance. Ultra-modern systems such as the 360 degree cameras offer assistance with parking and manoeuvring. They show the direct surroundings of the SUV coupé on the MMI display, and the driver can choose from several perspectives. The park assist automatically guides the car into and out of parking spaces and if, for example, the driver wants to back out of an entrance, the rear cross traffic assist warns about approaching vehicles. 

The new Audi Q3 Sportback is very much a lifestyle allrounder, with its elegant styling, dynamic performance and handling and high levels of luxury and appointment, giving it an edge in all driving situations and conditions. This unique combination of attributes are certain to strike a chord with Australian customers when the vehicle touches down here in the first half of next year – building on the tremendous success in the compact premium SUV market created by the Audi Q3.