2019 Q3 New Car Test Drive
The Q3, Audi's smallest crossover SUV, begins a new generation in 2019. It expands in almost every direction-it's longer, wider, and higher, which means big gains in interior room. The wheelbase grows by 3.8 inches to 105.5 inches, length by 4 inches to 176.6 inches, width by 0.7 inches, and height by 1.5 inches. It's still the smallest Audi crossover, but it's no longer small.
Meanwhile its looks are more daring, with a sculpted hood and octagonal grille taken from the full-size Audi Q8.
Most of that extended wheelbase goes to cabin space, with extra room in the back seat and up to 48 cubic feet of cargo space.
Elsewhere in the cabin, the conventional analog gauges are gone on most models, replaced by a 10.3-inch digital instrument cluster with an 8.8-inch central touchscreen.
The 2019 Q3 uses the VW Group's latest 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, now making 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, an increase of 28 hp and 51 lb-ft over last year's model. Even though the Q3 has gained a couple hundred pounds, it's faster than before, with a claimed acceleration time from zero to 60 mph of 7.0 seconds, along with a top speed of 130 mph. It's mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel drive. EPA-rated fuel economy is 19 mpg city, 27 highway, 22 combined.
But maybe the best thing about the new Q3 is the handling, which is quite nimble. It's the most tossable Audi after the TT.
The new Q3 hasn't been crash-tested by either the NHTSA or the IIHS yet. It comes standard with automatic emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, while adaptive cruise control, active lane control, lane-departure warnings, blind-spot monitors, a surround-view camera system, front and rear parking sensors, and rear side airbags are available, and standard on the top Prestige model. Also optional is a system that parks the Q3 at the touch of a button.
The new Q3 comes in three versions: Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige. The Premium is well-equipped, with few options.
For $35,695 the Premium comes with power features, leather upholstery, LED running lights, panoramic roof, a 10.3-inch digital instrument display with 8.8-inch touchscreen, 18-inch wheels, eight-way power driver seat, heated front seats, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility with AM/FM receiver, and keyless ignition.
Options include a 12.3-inch gauge display-Audi's 'virtual cockpit'?-and a 10.1-inch center touchscreen that accepts handwritten input. Also an upgraded Bang & Olufsen sound system; a $1,600 bundle includes satellite radio, front and rear parking sensors, lane-departure warnings and blind-spot monitors. An S line trim bundle is $1,300 and includes 19-inch wheels and aluminum door sills.
The $38,795 Premium Plus adds a power-adjustable front passenger seat, front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitors and lane-departure warnings, satellite radio, and full LED headlights. The S line trim package is $1,300, while navigation and the widescreen gauges with mapping are $2,000. A 15-speaker, 680-watt Bang & Olufsen sound system costs $850, and adaptive cruise control is $800.
The $43,895 Prestige gets standard S line trim, the virtual-cockpit screen and a larger 10.1-inch center screen, the Bang & Olufsen sound system, adaptive cruise control, the surround-view camera system, and ambient interior lighting. Sport seats are $500, while orange inlay trim costs $350 and 20-inch wheels, $800.