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Audi's muscular, but frugal, Q3 in SA

2015-06-02 11:48

FACELIFTED Q-CAR: Audi has spruced its Q3 range with new engines, design tweaks and new equipment. Image: Quickpic

Audi has refreshed it local Q3 range with a host of mechanical and equipment tweaks.

The range benefits from an entry-level 1.4 litre petrol and new 2.0 turbodiesels are set to arrive later in 2015 and 2016. The facelifted Q3 shows new, assertive design elements to rolled out for future Q-models.

Audi SA confirms the makeover extends to its performance RSQ3.

1.4 ENTRY-LEVEL TFSI

A new 1.4 litre 110kW/250Nm entry-level unit joins the range with a choice of either a six-speed manual or a seven-speed S tronic. Both transmissions are front-wheel drive only.

The two TFSI petrols (1.4 and 2.0 litre) and single TDI turbodiesel boast higher outputs, reduced fuel consumption and lower emissions. Audi says CO2 emissions have been reduced by as much as 17%.

The four-cylinder 2.0T unit is capable of 132kW/ 320Nm and can only be mated to a S tronic transmission.

The 2.0 TDI 135kW/380Nm, available in July 2015, is mated to Quattro and an S tronic transmission. A 2.0 TDI 110kW (front-wheel drive only) with S tronic will be available in 2016.

NEW Q-CAR CUES

The revised Q3 has design cues which will be rolled out to future Q-models; The latest Q3 has a new grille, revised bumpers (front and rear) and new LED head and tail lghts.

IMAGE GALLERY: 2015 Audi Q3

New LEDs are offered as an option for the first time in the entry-level 1.4 in combination with dynamic turn signals integrated into redesigned LED taillights. The turn signals illuminate sequentially in the direction the driver intends to turn.

The base unit has a curb weight of 1385kg with dimensions relatively unchanged from the outgoing version; it measures 4.39m long, 1.83m wide and 1.59m tall with a wheelbase of 2.60m. Roof rails and a new, extensible luggage-compartment cover are standard.

The chassis of the spruced Q3 has been fine-tuned for improved handling. Alloy rims range from 16” to 19” and the suspension has been tuned for comfort.

SAFETY SYSTEMS

Audi said: “With Audi side assist, a yellow LED indicator illuminates in the housing of the outside mirror if another vehicle is in the blind spot or is approaching rapidly from the rear. Audi active lane assist works with video cameras that detect the lane markings.

“It intervenes in steering to help the driver return to the lane if he or she comes too close to a line without indicating.”

Collision brake assist is standard along with a host of optional safety systems.

SPRUCED RS-BADGED SUV

The RS Q3 will receive engine tweaks when it’s launched in SA in August 2015. The five-cylinder 2.5 litre is capable of 250kW (increased by 22kW) and 450Nm, enabling to reach 100km/h in 4.8 seconds and on to a top speed of 250km/h.

An RS exhaust system with a switchable flap adds even more volume to the five-cylinder unit.

Its seven-speed S tronic, which transfers the power to the quattro drive train via a new hydraulic multi-plate clutch, has also been refined for faster gear changes. The lower gears are closely spaced for sporty response while the seventh is longer to save fuel.

The improved Audi RS Q3 will be introduced locally in August 2015.

Standard equipment: Audi Q3 1.4T FSI manual/S tronic

Xenon headlight with LED daytime running lights and halogen rear lights
Three-spoke multi-function leather sports steering wheel
Bluetooth with audio streaming
Voice control
Concert radio with pop-up LCD colour screen
Audi music interface
Driver information system with efficiency setting
New 16” alloy rims
Cruise control
Cloth seats
Front armrest
Passive speakers
Manual aircon
Front passenger airbag deactivation
Auto dimming mirror

The 2.0T FSI S tronic quattro and 2.0 TDI quattro S tronic units add new 17” alloy rims, LED interior lighting, auto aircon, front- passenger airbag deactivation.

PRICES

1.4T FSI 110 kW manual - R402 500
1.4T FSI 110 kW S tronic - R419 500
2.0T FSI 132 kW quattro S tronic - R499 000
2.0 TDI 135 kW quattro S tronic - R515 000
RSQ3 2.5T FSI 250 kW quattro S tronic - R769 500* (Aug 2015)

All units are sold with Audi’s Freeway Plan (five-years or 100 000km).

*Indicative pricing

NEW ENGINES ON WAY: The 2.0 TDI 135kW turbodiesel will arrive in July 2015 followed by a front-wheel-drive-only 110kW 2.0 TDI in 2016. Image: Audi


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