2018 Audi Q3 Review, Specs and Release Date – The 2018 Audi Q3 comes with a fun-to-drive alternative to the entry compact luxury car, but more utility. Versus its rivals, it delivers more ride comfort and interior refinement, but less fuel efficiency.
As U.S. drivers trade in their sedans for SUVs, the latest strain of small crossovers is reaping the benefits. Enter the 2018 Audi Q3, the entry model in Audi’s utility-vehicle lineup.
The Q3 adheres to your simple model strategy, offering one powertrain, front- or all-wheel drive, and three models: Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige.
We rate the Q3 at 6.3 overall. It’s as good as average to the class. Handling and interior quality be noticed, although the Q3 could increase the security features and improve its fuel economy.
2018 Audi Q3
The Q3 conforms to Audi’s crossover styling cues, playing with a lesser package. The look is almost stubby, but attractive plus it should age well. Inside, it is not as high-end as other Audis, but the black expanse from the dash is separated by pieces of metal trim plus an infotainment screen.
That infotainment system isn’t quite as easy to control as other versions of Audi’s MMI, but it continues to have an abundance of functionality, with highlights like Google Earth maps.
Interior space is limited. Entry seat is the right place for being, although the standard panoramic sunroof robs headroom for taller occupants. A back corner seat offers limited headroom and knee room for any individual over 6 feet tall. The cargo area is kind of useful, particularly with the trunk seats folded down.
A 200-horsepower turbo-4 mates to your 6-speed automatic. Acceleration is frisky and not fast. The Q3 has an abundance of grip, and good ride quality. Fuel economy is ordinary at 20 mpg city, 28 highway, 23 combined.
About the Q3, Audi fits heated power front seats, satellite radio, and alloy wheels. We recommend the not compulsory sport seats. Also available are Bose audio, navigation, and 4G LTE data services.
Aspects an assorted bag. The Q3 doesn’t offer forward-collision warnings, plus it hasn’t been suffering from all current crash tests, but it has performed well from the crash tests it’s got undergone.
2018 Audi Q3 Styling
The Audi Q3 plays out its familiar crossover shape over a lesser canvas, building a stubbier, however attractive look.
As a smallish crossover at the bottom of the lineup, the 2018 Audi Q3 straddles a middle ground involving the A3 Sportback (hatchback) as well as its larger Q5 brother. No forge the latest path for Audi design: it adopts familiar cues to your smaller canvas.
We rate the Q3 a 6 for styling, adding the to the attractive, cohesive interior design. While it retains the signature exterior cues which may have worked so well for Audi, it just isn’t as confident with its proportions because the Q5.
The Q3’s looks almost came predetermined. It had to squeeze into their confines on the crossover plus an Audi. That meant the top height, length, and overall shape had to squeeze into a formula, therefore did the grille and also other familiar cues. The result is a tidy, though somewhat stubby crossover which should age fairly well.
Up front, the Q3’s grille sits low, flanked by narrow headlights that smooth out intakes that appear fairly large due to this vehicle. This current year maybe the base model gets the meaner-looking S line front bumper and door sills. The flanks are sculpted gently, and the glass is slimmer compared to the Q5. The tailgate wraps around the trunk end, and the LED taillights provide a nice-looking rear signature.
Inside, the dash is a broad expanse of muted black, with metallic trim and soft-touch surfaces. The ambience just isn’t as upscale as other Audis, but it continues to have reasonably limited look and feel. Unlike other sorts of Audis, the middle screen doesn’t stow away, likely caused by space constraints, as well as its controls are moved from the middle console to the middle stack.
2018 Audi Q3 Performance
The 2018 Q3 is nimble as well as its powertrain is responsive out and about, but it’s not particularly quick.
The 2018 Audi Q3 keeps performance simple. Merely one engine and transmission are offered, and Audi just just one suspension setup. The only real options between front- and all-wheel drive.
Still, to make sure well tuned, and we rate the Q3 a 6 for performance, awarding an area for good handling. The powertrain is respectable, but it’s not overpowering.
The suspension features a four-link rear setup with front struts and fairly quick electric-assist power steering. It doesn’t provide a lot of feedback from the road like the BMW X1 does, but the steering is responsive and reasonably quick, the ride is well damped, and the handling is agile. The overall feel is actually sportier than the X1, yet the ride isn’t nearly as harsh as you find in the Mercedes-Benz GLA. It’s a good balance.
The powertrain consists of a 2.0-liter turbo-4 that puts out 200 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. This engine is exceptionally well-tuned and responsive, and the transmission has well-spaced gears and delivers confident shifts.
All 207 lb-ft of torque are available by 2,000 rpm, and that helps for getting out ahead of traffic. However, at about 3,500 pounds, the Q3 is heavier than it looks and the 0-60 mph run takes a pedestrian 7.8 seconds with front-wheel drive or 8.2 seconds with all-wheel drive. The top speed is 130 mph, but you will likely need patience to get there. If power and performance are the goals, the Mercedes-AMG GLA 45 is the one and only choice in this class.
2018 Audi Q3 Comfort & Quality
The 2018 Audi Q3 offers supportive optional sport seats and a modicum of interior utility for such a small crossover.
At just 172.6 inches long, the Audi Q3 is just a foot longer than a Mini Cooper hatchback, giving it a rather small cabin. Still, it has enough space for commuters, couples, or even urban parents with one or two small children.
We rate the Q3 a 7 out of 10 for comfort and quality, awarding it points for its materials quality and supportive front seats, but this new breed of crossover is just too small to gain any points for interior space.
Despite its size, the Q3 has more shoulder room than some rivals, and the center console doesn’t rob too much knee room. Still, the best place to be in the Q3 is the driver’s seat, and, short of that, the front passenger seat. The driving position is natural and the seats are comfortable. The available sport seats are a must-have due to their extra support. Unfortunately, anyone over 6 feet tall will find that the standard panoramic sunroof cuts into head room.
The rear seat borders on snug for adult passengers. Here, 6-footers will find their knees up against the front seats and their heads touching the headliner.
With the rear seats up, the Q3 has 16.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind in the cargo area. That’s about as much as a sedan’s trunk, but that measurement is taken all the way to the ceiling, so it’s not that roomy. It gets more useful with the rear seats folded down, when it expands to 48.2 cubic feet of space. That’s enough for a couple of roll-aboards and a couple of soft-sided bags or a week’s worth of groceries for the family.
In terms of interior quality, the Q3 sits at the bottom of the Audi lineup. That’s not as bad as it sounds, Audi makes great interiors. Still, the look is a bit stark, and the materials are generally good, but not as rich as you get in just about any other model.
2018 Audi Q3 Safety
The Audi Q3 lacks front crash prevention and has been subjected to only limited crash tests.
The 2018 Audi Q3 comes with some a modest list of safety features and it lacks some important ones that would improve its crash-test safety scores. Also, it hasn’t been subjected to all of the crash tests, and therefore it can’t score higher than 6 in our ratings.
Standard safety equipment includes a rearview camera, the usual roster of airbags, and front and rear parking sensors. Buyers can also get blind-spot monitors, but forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking are not available.
The IIHS is the only agency that has crash-tested the Q3. It earned the top rating of “Good” in the all the dynamic occupant-protection tests. However, it received a “Poor” rating for its headlights and its lack of a forward-collision warning system means it can’t be named a Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+. The NHTSA hasn’t yet crash-tested the Q3.
Visibility to the rear is somewhat obstructed by thick pillars and small glass area, but otherwise the Q3 is fairly easy to see out of, and the standard rearview camera is appreciated.
2018 Audi Q3 Features
The Q3’s base equipment is pretty generous, but the higher line models and options take the price into Q5 territory.
Audi offers the Q3 with front- or all-wheel drive and in Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige trim levels. It comes with good base and optional equipment, and the infotainment system is a good one as well. Given those considerations, we score the Q3 a 7 out of 10 for features.
All models now come standard while using the S line exterior trim, such as different front bumper and door sills, plus S line badging. Standard equipment around the Premium model includes 12-way power-adjustable front seats (heated for 2018), keyless ignition, a rearview camera, a 10-speaker AM/FM/CD music system, satellite radio, a USB port, Bluetooth connectivity, a panoramic sunroof, LED taillights and daytime running lights, and 18-inch alloy wheels. A whole new Convenience package for any Premium carries a power liftgate and a auto-dimming rearview mirror with a compass.
Premium Plus models add an energy liftgate; heated, power-folding side mirrors; full LED headlights; LED taillights; and, new for 2018, blind-spot monitors.
The Premium Plus is provided with a Sport plus package including a flat-bottom rim with shift paddles, sport seats, Audi’s drive select mode selector, a Black optic exterior kit, black roof rails, and 19-inch, 10-spoke titanium-design wheels with all-season tires.
The Prestige trim adds Audi’s Multi-Media Interface (MMI) infotainment system, navigation, a 14-speaker Bose music system, in-vehicle 4G LTE data services with Audi Connect, and 19-inch wheels.
Load up as well as Q3 Prestige tops $40,000, similar to its BMW and Mercedes-Benz rivals.
The MMI system runs by way of a knob around the dash rather than a rotary controller on the center console. It’s not as simple to use as the hand can’t rest around the console, but this doesn’t happen dull the Q3’s tech sheen. It gives a high-resolution display with Google Earth maps and several other functionality.
2018 Audi Q3 Fuel Economy
Though small, the 2018 Audi Q3 delivers unremarkable gas mileage that’s bested by its rivals as well as the greater Audi Q5.
The 2018 Audi Q3 is a reasonably small crossover, nevertheless its gas mileage just isn’t as thrifty becasue it is size might indicate.
That might be as the Q3 isn’t long or sleek enough to comprehend any highway gas mileage gains advantage from its design, and that is evidenced because this doesn’t happen even get 30 mpg around the highway. In truth, its EPA gas mileage ratings with both front- and all-wheel drive are 20 mpg city, 28 highway, 23 combined. Those ratings qualify it to get a 6 outside of 10 rating inside our system.
Audi has announced no hybrid plans for any Q3 and any diesel it can have offered has likely been scuttled with the “Dieselgate” scandal. Greater Q5 uses a much more powerful powertrain and also gets better gas mileage, and competitors from BMW and Mercedes-Benz also beat it for fuel mileage.