Audi redesigned the second-generation compact Q3 SUV just in time to make way for the even smaller Q2 crossover, both set for a late-2018, early-2019 US release. The redesigned Q3, however, takes styling cues from the all-new Q8 SUV to give the small SUV more modern and mature styling. And in an age where the small SUV and crossover market is king, keeping things fresh and elevated is crucial.
The boxed fender flares at each corner, a massive silver outlined octagonal grille up front and sloped C-pillar on the new Q3 are near carbon copies from the big Q8. There’s not that much that separates the two stylistically, other than the headlight and taillight design and the lower front vents. Audi even went so far as to give the Q3 the same full-digital driver interface, infotainment system and similar driver assists as the Q8 and, of course, Audi Virtual Cockpit.
Aside from the obvious size difference, it won’t be a surprise to hear the Q3 gets a host of smaller engines, too. While trying to stuff the Q8’s 335 horsepower 3.0-liter V6 into the Q3 sounds pretty damn entertaining, the Q3 has to make do with as little as 150 HP. But, not to worry, the Q3 will have four engines to choose from, three regular and one diesel option. The range-topping 2.0-liter turbo inline-four will be good for 230 HP.
A little nugget of gold buried in the Audi news release also mentions a six-speed manual option will be available, but an Audi representative confirmed it won’t be coming to the US Despite that tiny little bombshell, pricing was not announced, but it’s fair to say it won’t stray too far from the current Q3 price tag of $32,900 when it hits dealerships later this year.
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