Juliet reviews…The Audi Q3 Sportback

The Audi Q3 Sportback is like most SUV coupés in that it makes for a rather interesting purchase. These types of cars are more often than not a sportier-looking version of their standard models equivalents. BMW kicked it off with its X6 a few years back, which is essentially based on the X5. Audi has joined the party with its Q8, which is based on the Q7. And then there is this, the Q3 Sportback, which is, of course, based on the standard Q3. One would think it should then be called the Q4, but this badge has been reserved for a future electric vehicle. So, it is the Q3 Sportback.

It sometimes boggles my mind why someone would opt for these over the standard SUV models. But that is only because I am usually all about the practicality. This topic, however, is a big discussion at the moment, because some argue that it is a waste of money to pay more for less. And by less I mean less space. But the other side of that argument is that one is, in effect, paying for the design. And one cannot deny that the Q3 Sportback is a very good-looking car. But is it better looking than a standard Q3? This is going to come down to preference of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder after all.

The sloping roofline compromises rear space, especially the headroom,and adults might struggle to get comfortable. The boot is smaller in the Q3 Sportback too, more than 100-litres smaller than the standard Q3 boot. But look, it is not completely impractical. One can still easily fit kids on the rear bench and enough paraphrenia in the boot. It comes down to how much space you require. 

The cabin in the Sportback is identical to that of the standard Q3. And the engine line up is the same here in SA. You can opt for the 35 TSFI which sports a 1.4-litre turbopetrol engine or you can opt for the 40 TFSI which boasts a 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbopetrol engine. It may look a bit sportier, but don’t expect a more dynamic drive. Only the ride is a bit firmer due to the standard sports suspension. If you love the ride and drive of the standard Q3 then you will enjoy this as well. It is as refined as you can get. Just bear in mind that the rearview window is narrow and so rear visibility is ever so slightly compromised.  

As I have mentioned, you really are just paying for a different design when it comes to the Q3 Sportback. The pricing for this model starts at R693 000 for 35 TSFI, whereas the standard Q3 will cost you around R60 000 less at R630 000. The 40 TFSI starts at R737 000 with the standard 40 TFSI Q3 costing around R30 000 less. It is going to come down to preference and what your needs are. For rivals you can look at the BMW X2, the Mercedes-Benz GLA or even something like the Range Rover Evoque.

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