The new Audi Q3 is a family SUV
The new Audi Q3 is a family SUV with great all-round talents. In the second generation it appears not only visually more self-confident, but offers far greater utility value thanks to abundant space, comprehensive adaptability and many practical details. Just like the Audi top-of-the-line models, it features a digital cockpit and a large MMI screen with touch response. Numerous infotainment solutions from the full-size segment connect the compact SUV with its environment. New assist systems support the driver when parking, in town and on long journeys. These features also enhance comfort, as does the further developed suspension.
Strength and presence: the exterior design
The new Audi Q3 looks much sportier than its predecessor. The Singleframe grille in octagon design and large side air inlets characterise the aggressive front-end. Eight vertical bars divide up the radiator grille with its striking frame and reflect the SUV's character. The headlights are narrow and run inwards with their wedge shape. Audi supplies them with LED technology including dynamic turn signals as standard. Customers are also able to upgrade to Matrix LED headlights (available as an optional extra) which intelligently illuminates the road through its adaptive high-beam technology.
A highlight in the side view is the symmetrical lighting graphics of the headlights and rear lights. The shoulder line connects them from a styling perspective and provides an athletic overall impression with strong muscles over the wheel arches. The contours draw their inspiration from Audi’s quattro DNA and make the SUV seem even wider; the colour-contrasting wheel arch trims (in the Standard and Advanced trim lines) emphasise the off-road look, while the body-coloured version (in the S Line trim line) offers a sportier character. Supported by a long roof edge spoiler, which also flanks the rear window at the side, the steeply raked D pillars of the body line also create an appearance of forward thrust.
Customers for the new Q3 have many options for customising their car. These include a contrasting paint finish for the lower body section, which accentuates the SUV look even more. With the S-line exterior package, the bumpers, sill trims and diffuser look decidedly sporty. Eleven paint colours are available. There are also two exterior trim lines available in addition to the standard model, namely the Advanced and S-line trim lines. Each provides a differentiated exterior visual appearance with characteristic bumper elements and larger rims.
Driver-oriented and sporty: the interior
Sporty character, taut lines, three-dimensionally styled elements – the interior continues the design of the exterior and echoes in many ways the brand’s full-size models. The instrument panel is divided into two levels: the top part includes the air vents; the bottom section incorporates the large octagonal area with its black-panel look. The instrument panel varies the motif of the Singleframe and is surrounded by a wide chrome strip. The high-gloss black trim surrounds the central element of the new operating concept: the MMI touch display. Together with the air conditioning controls underneath, it is tilted 10 degrees toward the driver. The push-button module for the lighting functions, which replaces the rotary control on the predecessor model, is slotted into the panel to the left of the steering wheel. All displays, buttons and controls are located ergonomically.
Audi has also developed a new concept for the colours and materials. Q3 customers can choose between two variants over and above the standard version – the sports package and the S-line sports interior package. Both packages include the sport seats, which are trimmed optionally with a combination of leather/artificial leather and Alcantara. The Alcantara surfaces on the instrument panel and on the door armrests are an entirely new option. They are available in two colours: steel grey or a bold orange.
In the dark, the contour ambient LED lighting package – available as an optional extra or standard with the technology package – sets pinpoint lighting accents on the centre console and on the doors. It can be set to 30 colours and also illuminates the storage compartment under the instrument panel as well as the Audi logo above the glove compartment. Other interior features include the standard two-zone air conditioning, the panoramic glass sunroof or the flat-bottomed sports steering wheel.
Large and adaptable: the space concept
The new Audi Q3, which is based on the Volkswagen Group’s modular transverse matrix, has grown in virtually all dimensions and is positioned in the upper compact SUV segment. It is 4 484 millimetres long, making it 96 millimetres longer than its predecessor. In terms of width, it has grown 18 millimetres to 1 849 millimetres, but at 1 585 millimetres without the roof aerial, it is 5 millimetres flatter than the first-generation Q3. Its wheelbase, which has been stretched 77 millimetres to 2 680 millimetres is much more spacious – knee room, headroom and elbow room are even larger.
In typical SUV fashion, the Audi Q3 is easy to get into, with good all-round visibility, and yet offers a sporty seating position. The steering wheel is steeply angled accordingly. The seats – electrically adjustable as an option – offer the same comfort as in the larger SUV category.
One highlight is the standard-fit highly variable division of space: the rear seats can be moved fore/aft by 150 millimetres. Their three-way split backrests in the ratio 40:20:40 can be tilted in seven stages. Rear passengers also have the option of a centre armrest that features two cup holders as standard.
Depending on the position of the rear seats and backrests, the luggage compartment capacity totals 530 or 675 litres. With the backrests folded down the figure rises to 1 525 litres. The loading floor can be adjusted in up to three levels; the low loading sill of 748 millimetres makes it easier to stow heavy luggage. If the parcel shelf is not needed, it can be stowed under the loading floor. For extra comfort on long journeys, Audi offers the storage and luggage compartment package as an option or part of the comfort package. Besides nets on the backs of the front seats and a storage compartment under the front passenger seat, it includes a luggage compartment net as well as LED spotlights in the tailgate to provide illumination whatever the vehicle is carrying. The optional extra electric tailgate provides effortless access to the luggage compartment. In conjunction with the convenience key, it can also be opened and closed with a kicking motion.
Local packages: offering simplicity
Audi South Africa has introduced a new package concept which will be adopted for all new models to be launched. The concept aims to reduce complexity when ordering a new vehicle, considering that a customer is generally faced with a long list of options to choose from. It classifies key options according to a specific customer need and offers a straight-forward value proposition that is easy for a customer to understand. These packages have been defined by a combination of customer preferences as well as strategic options which aim to highlight Audi’s unique character or technology enhancements.
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