Audi Q3 Review 2024

Audi Q3 At A Glance

4/5
Honest John Overall Rating
The Audi Q3 is a desirable, premium-badged compact SUV that offers strong all-round performance and plenty of practicality.

+Spacious interior. Generous amount of standard technology. Impressive practicality, despite its compact dimensions.

-Not that inspiring to drive. Some interior trim falls below our expectations of Audi. Optional extras can be expensive.

New prices start from £30,310, brokers can source from £31,931
Insurance Groups are between 24–38
On average it achieves 83% of the official MPG figure

The second generation of Audi Q3 finds itself swamped with competition from almost every angle. The compact SUV market is booming, and the Audi Q3 has to fight off rivals like the BMW X1 and the Mercedes GLB, along with models from mainstream brands such as the Hyundai Tucson and its Korean stablemate the Kia Sportage. Read on for our full Audi Q3 review.

When the original Audi Q3 was launched back in 2011, it hardly set the world alight with excitement. Compared to its rivals at the time, it offered only a mediocre driving experience, while its interior dated rapidly in this image-conscious area of the market.

It meant there was a lot of pressure on the second-generation model, which first went on sale in 2018. For a start, the current Audi Q3 certainly looks more imposing and premium, with plenty of sharp angles and a bold front grille.

Add in features such as LED lighting and the racy bodykit found on S line models, and it certainly has the image side of things sorted.

Should you really prefer style over rear practicality, Audi will happily sell you the Audi Q3 Sportback instead. This is a separate model pitched at the BMW X2 and the Mercedes GLA. It has coupe-like styling, but less rear space and a larger price tag.

The Audi Q3’s interior was also overhauled for this second-generation car, taking inspiration from the flagship Audi Q8 SUV.

Although it mimics the bigger car in style, some of the materials used in the cabin are a touch sub-premium. Although hardly a deal-breaker, it’s a reminder that even Audi sometimes has to build down to a price.

On the plus side, the interior is hugely practical, with particular credit going to the sliding rear seats. These can move backwards and forwards by 150mm, allowing a trade-off to be made between boot capacity or rear legroom. The rear backrest angle can also be adjusted, helping taller passengers to sit more comfortably.

With a wide range of engines, including three petrol options, two diesels and a plug-in hybrid (PHEV), there is an Audi Q3 to suit every need. The Audi Q3 TFSI 45 e PHEV is noteworthy for its low running costs, including the potential to reach an official 176.6mpg.

There is also the related Audi RS Q3 model, for those who want a crossover SUV to deliver rapid performance, such as 0-62mph in just 4.5 seconds. This version earns its own separate review.

The RS Q3 aside, however, the Audi Q3 is still not the most fun compact SUV to drive. A BMW X1 will deliver more engaging handling, and the Audi Q3’s ride can feel taut on Black Edition versions.

Even in a competitive market, which has new rivals seemingly added daily, the Audi Q3 still has a lot going for it. It nails the brief for being a practical family SUV and the recent changes to trim levels mean even the cheapest version comes stacked with plenty of equipment.

Other than the less-than-premium quality in small sections of the cabin, plus a relatively remote driving experience, the Audi Q3 delivers on everything you could ask of it. It certainly atones for its first-generation predecessor, and is a worthy contender in this class.

Fancy a second opinion? Read heycar's Audi Q3 review.

Ask Honest John

How do I navigate the minefield of buying cars?

"My wife and I only have the one car now we’re both in our 70s and retired but fortunately fit and active. I do between three and four thousand miles per year, mainly short local trips plus three trips from Newcastle to Dundee. I’ve spent hours reading reviews (including your own) trying to decide what would be the ideal car for us and I’m still left feeling totally bemused. I’ve never driven an SUV, feel some resemble military vehicles and wonder how my wife handle them as she’s quite a small lady. Some advise these are ideal vehicles for seniors. I would welcome any advice you may have which might point me in the right direction."
As you've probably realised, SUVs are now extremely popular. This is partly due to image but people also like their raised seating position (which helps access and gives you a good view of the road ahead) as well as increased practicality. The footprint of many SUVs is often no bigger than the equivalent hatchback or saloon model, while technology such as reversing cameras and sensors helps when it comes to parking. We'd recommend looking at the new Kia Sportage and Hyundai Tucson. They're two very comfortable SUVs that represent good value for money and will be cheap to run. You could also look at more premium alternatives like the Volvo XC40 and Audi Q3. Alternatively, if you'd prefer to avoid SUVs, take a look at conventional hatchbacks like the Volkswagen Golf and Mercedes A-Class. They might be out of fashion but they're still a good, solid choice.
Answered by Andrew Brady

Can you recommend a small SUV for towing?

"I'm looking to purchase a small/mid-sized SUV for about £20,000. We only drive about 8,000 miles per year so I'm guessing petrol but we do tow a trailer tent quite often in the summer months so it must cope with that OK. I'm looking at the BMW X1 or X2 or maybe the Audi Q3. I have not discounted going bit bigger so the Mazda CX-5, Toyota RAV4 or Ford Kuga may be options."
The low-down grunt of a diesel engine will make light work of towing your trailer tent but it's not ideal for your otherwise low mileage. I'm guessing your trailer tent isn't particularly heavy, so a punchy turbocharged petrol should be able to tow it without too much effort. Depending on its weight, a BMW X1/X2 or Audi Q2 should be up to the job and they're excellent small SUVs. How about a Volkswagen Tiguan? It's not quite as premium as a BMW or Audi, but you get more physical car for your money. Take a look at the Skoda Karoq, too, if you're not fussed about the badge on the bonnet.
Answered by Andrew Brady

What has caused scoring on the brake discs of my Audi Q3?

"My 2019 Audi Q3 had its first big service a few weeks ago. They found all brake discs needed replacing due to them being scored. Is this normal as I've only done 9,500 miles? I used to drive emergency ambulances so I know it's not due to bad driving. Due to it being an urgent attention case I had them replaced at a cost of £1,160. I have complained to Audi who have offered a next free service not including parts. I am extremely disappointed and shocked they've scored so quickly. I certainly don't want to pay that amount every few years. I have had five Audis and this has never happened before. "
If I had to make a guess, I'd say the scoring on the brakes is caused by corrosion. Rust will build on the discs whenever the car is left standing outside for 3+ days. Usually, you clear this off with general driving (with the brake pads cleaning the rust off). However, if you use the car for mostly short journeys or do not use the vehicle very often, the rust will eat into the metal and damage the discs.
Answered by Dan Powell

Audi Q3 delay, can I cancel my order?

"I ordered an Audi Q3 from a main dealer in September 202. Audi build weeks of November week 3, December week 3, January week 4. Since early December all build weeks have been no longer forecast and they have now removed the spec for any new orders. Do I keep waiting in the belief that a locked in new price will ensure a build soon? Am I entitled to ask for a full return of deposit and look elsewhere?"
If the dealer is unable to provide a reasonable lead time for the delivery then you will probably be entitled to cancel the order. You will need to check the terms and conditions of the sales documents to be sure of this. To be fair to the dealer, the car industry is going through unprecedented times with a shortage of semiconductors and parts. Some dealers are struggling to offer test drives: https://www.honestjohn.co.uk/news/car-market-1/2021-12/car-dealers-struggling-to-offer-test-drives/ I don't expect things to return to normal until the latter part of 2022.
Answered by Dan Powell
More Questions

What does a Audi Q3 cost?

Buy new from £31,931(list price from £34,465)