2019 Audi Q3 First Look
- Crisper lines, more attitude
- Larger vehicle, roomier interior
- Redesigned cabin boasts all-digital displays
- Current Audi Q3 priced from $33,875
Audi revealed the European version of the second generation of its subcompact Q3 crossover SUV, which provides a strong indication of what to expect from the U.S. model. Based on a version of the Volkswagen Group’s MQB platform which underpins the VW Tiguan, the new Q3 is nearly four inches longer than its predecessor, rides on a three-inch-longer wheelbase, and is a touch wider. Along with the new dimensions, the Q3 also receives new styling. It has a sharper-edged nose, with a revised grille and more angular headlights. The 2019 model’s hood has a flatter profile, and along the sides of the Q3 there is a muscular character line that rises over the rear wheel wells.
The redesigned interior has sharper, cleaner lines than in the previous Q3, and a brighter, airier feel. While specifics have not yet been announced for U.S. models, the Euro-spec Q3 comes with a choice of three interior options: basic, Audi design, and S line, with sport seats and available leather or Alcantara. As this is a larger vehicle, the new Q3 benefits from more space inside: there’s more legroom, headroom and elbow room, and the seats in the second row of this 5-passenger SUV can be tilted and moved forward and back, with a total of 5.9 inches of travel. Interior options include power seats, heated steering wheel, panoramic glass sunroof and dual-zone air conditioning.
In back, there’s now enough room to carry 18.7 cubic feet with the seats up and slid all the way back (up from 16.7 in the current model). When the second row is folded, the Q3 has 53.9 cubic feet of space up from the previous model’s 48.2 cubic feet. The Q3 has a power tailgate that can also be opened and closed with a kicking motion.
Audi is a brand that’s known for innovative tech, and the new Q3 has no analog instruments. All models come with a digital instrument cluster with a 10.25-inch screen, with a 12.3-inch display optional. When buyers step up to the Audi virtual cockpit, the system displays navigation between the gauges, and as part of the MMI radio plus package. The dash center is also equipped with an 8.8-inch touch screen.
When equipped with nav, the upcoming Q3 will come with natural language voice control. It’ll understand “freely structured wording,” as Audi explains, and the system will ask questions and offer choices. Other tech options allow use of Google Earth services and access to online news, email, and traffic. There’s also a wi-fi hotspot onboard. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto will be offered, as will a 15-speaker, 680-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system with virtual 3D sound. Safety systems include optional adaptive speed assist, traffic jam assist, and active lane assist. Audi’s pre-sense front safety system comes standard. It uses radar to detect pedestrians, cyclists and other vehicles and warns the driver. There’s also a parking assist that helps with parallel parking maneuvers, and there are four 360-degree cameras that show the Q3’s position at speeds up to 6.2 mph.
While European markets will have a choice of four engines in the Q3 -- a 1.5-liter, 150-horsepower gas engine; a 2.0-liter, 190-hp gas engine or the 230-hp version of the same engine; and a 2.0-liter 150-190-horsepower diesel -- with a 7-speed automatic transmission, Audi has not yet announced which engines are coming to America. We anticipate the standard Q3 will be front-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive as an option.
The new Q3 goes on sale first in Europe in November 2018. Audi has not yet announced when the new model will arrive at U.S. dealers, nor have they announced pricing. However, the current Q3 starts at $33,875 (including destination) for the Premium, and $36,775 for the Premium Plus.