Audi Q3 Sportback S Line Klang Valley Test Drive Review

Is the Q3 Sportback sales being held back by the duty free Q8 e-tron electric SUV

Have you seen this latest version of Audi Q3 Sportback on our roads? Probably not and there is a reason why. Well, its asking price is RM351,223 and sixty cents. Yes, that is a very high selling price and there is a reason for this.

Just like with its immediate rivals, the Lexus NX and Porsche Macan, this Q3 Sportback is fully imported and this means it enjoys NO import duty incentives.

With full duties paid, the asking price is very close to its all electric siblings the Audi Q8 e-tron (electric SUV) which enjoy zero import duties right now making its selling price too good to be true from just RM383,990 and that is why there are a few hundred bookings for this EV right after its launch.

Meanwhile, there is only a handful of Malaysian premium SUV buyers willing to pay this price. Still, Audi In Malaysia wants to have petrol driven performance vehicles available to Malaysians looking for this powertrain.

Meanwhile, with its low roofline that gives way to flat D-pillars and ends in a roof edge spoiler, this Q3 Sportback is much longer than its sister model, the Q3. In addition, the SUV-coupé is almost three centimeters flatter, and thus has a more muscular appearance.

Sporty suspension

The Audi Q3 Sportback offers driving fun with a suspension available 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 off-road mode. In addition to the engine and transmission set-up, this system also influences the electronically adjustable shock absorbers and the steering assistance.

Interior and space

The Audi Q3 Sportback is 4.50 m (14.8 ft) long, 1.84 m (6.0 ft) wide and 1.56 m (5.1 ft) high; its wheelbase measures 2.68 m (8.8 ft). This results in a large and highly variable interior. The rear seats offer space for three people. They can be moved 130 mm (5.1 in) longitudinally as standard; their backrests are divided into three sections, and their inclination can be adjusted in seven stages. The volume of the luggage compartment ranges from 530 l (18.7 cu ft) to 1,400 l (49.4 cu ft).

In the dark, the optional contour/ambient lighting package sets lighting accents with its 30 selectable colors.

Q3 Sportback Drive

Just like with the A5, this Q3 cabin is driver-focused. All controls are positioned to allow the driver to assimilate their information with a single glance and operate them with ease. The interior of this Q3 comes with leather upholstery as standard and also electric front seats.

The 2.0L TFSI engine can be altered in attitude by using the ‘Drive Select’ control switch, allowing the driver to choose between SPORT and COMFORT mode. The factory programmed SPORT mode provides the driver with a dynamic steering response and powertrain response.

This 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine provides for a top speed of 220km/h when needed from an engine output of 180hp and an impressive mid-range punch of 320Nm of torque. This Q3 sprints from 0-100km/h in just 7.8 seconds with a 7-speed slick shifting double-clutch gearbox.

Q3 Sportback

In the city, this crossover behaves predictably like a hot hatch through corners and the average driver will find themselves slowly being a hero around corners as its high tail stays tucked in at speeds that will leave many others scouring for traction, all this thanks also to the Quattro drive system. The drive comes instantly and with great traction, pulling this Q3 from the apex with neutrality not many drivers can really handle. And unlike it immediate rival (the BMW X2), the rewards seem to come entirely without compromise. The well damped steering wheel is a joy to hold and abuse around corners.

In case you were wondering, the Audi Q3 compact SUV is also on sale at a price of just RM269,900.

Q3 Sportback

Audi Q3 Sportback Specifications

Engine: 4-cylinder Twin-Turbo

Capacity: 1984cc

Power: 180bhp @ 3,900-6,000rpm

Torque: 320Nm @ 1,400-3,940rpm

Transmission: 7-speed S-Tronic

0-100km/h: 7.8secs

Top speed: 220km/h

Price: RM351,223.60 (fully imported)

Q3 Sportback

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