source: Audi AG
Curtain up for the new RS Q3 (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 8.9–8.8 (26.4–26.7 mpg); combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 203–202 (326.7–325.1 g/mi)) and RS Q3 Sportback (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 8.9–8.8 (26.4–26.7 mpg); combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 204–202 (328.3–325.1 g/mi)): Both models combine a drive concept that is unique in the segment with an emotional design and a high level of everyday usability. The legendary and multi-award-winning 2.5 liter TFSI engine is the core of the two high-performance SUVs. In combination with the quattro permanent all-wheel drive, it offers pure driving pleasure. With the standard RS sport suspension, the two compact sports cars are ten millimeters (0.4 in) lower than the basic models; this emphasizes the feisty character of the RS Q3.
“We established a completely new segment with the first generation of the Audi RS Q3. In order to continue this success story, we also offer the RS Q3 as an SUV Coupé for customers with a particular affinity for design,” says Oliver Hoffmann, Managing Director of Audi Sport GmbH. “In doing so, we are setting a trend and tapping new growth potential for Audi Sport GmbH.”
Illustrator of character: the exterior design
The new Audi RS Q3 and the Audi RS Q3 Sportback share numerous RS design features while also each illustrating their unique character through many details. The gloss black Singleframe with its three-dimensional honeycomb structure makes the two highperformance compact cars look even sharper. Its position is lower as compared to the Q3, and it is inserted directly into the RS-specific bumper with large lateral air inlets. The striking boomerang-shaped blades in the bumper are designed exclusively for the RS Q3. The RS genes are also apparent in the flat slits above the Singleframe radiator grille. With its coupé-like roof line that slopes downward toward the rear, the RS Q3 Sportback is 45 millimeters (1.8 in) lower than the RS Q3. The rising shoulder line of the Sportback runs lower than that of its sister model and thus also lowers the body’s optical focus. This makes the wheels appear even larger and the SUV Coupé seem a little more muscular. The wheel arches, which are flared by ten millimeters (0.4 in), make both cars look wider.
The rear design also appears very powerful. With the low rear window and the roof edge spoiler in gloss black with the RS-specific spoiler lip, the RS Q3 Sportback** appears even wider and more dynamic than its sister model. The low-slung roof line culminates in strong,flat sloping D-pillars. The RS-specific long roof edge spoiler in the RS Q3 emphasizes the pronounced forward thrust of the high-performance SUV and ensures improved downforce. The new generation of the RS Q3 comes for the first time with a dual-branch RS exhaust system with large oval tailpipes on both sides. This exhaust system sits in an RS-specific bumper with rear diffuser and horizontal blades.
The compact high-performance SUV and the compact high-performance SUV Coupé are fitted with LED headlights as standard. Audi offers matrix LED headlights with RS-specific darkened bezels as an option.
Unique: the engine
The new RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback are fitted with the powerful five-cylinder 2.5 TFSI. It now draws just over 17 percent more power from 2,480 cc of displacement with 294 kW (400 PS) (combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 8.9 – 8.8; combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 204 – 202) than in the preceding generation of the RS Q3. Its maximum torque of 480 Nm (354.0 lb-ft) is available between 1,950 and 5,850 rpm. The RS Q3** and RS Q3 Sportback** sprint from zero to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in just 4.5 seconds. Their top speed is regulated at 250 km/h (155.3 mph) or an optional 280 km/h (174.0 mph).
The particular firing sequence of 1-2-4-5-3 and the odd number of cylinders make for a very special rhythm and unique engine sound. The dual-branch RS exhaust system emphasizes the characteristic sound of the five-cylinder engine, and the optional RS sport exhaust system makes it even sharper. The five-cylinder engine has won the sought-after “International Engine of the Year Award” nine times in a row.
As standard, the power of the five-cylinder engine is transmitted via a seven-speed S tronic to the quattro permanent all-wheel drive. The wheel-selective torque control perfects the safe and agile handling.
Sporty, agile, and versatile: the suspension
The consistently sporty suspension tuning is a basic requirement for the outstanding driving characteristics of the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback. The standard RS sport suspension lowers the body by 10 millimeters (0.4 in) as compared to the Q3 family. Upon request, the RS sport suspension is available with Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC), whose sensors measure the sprung mass vibrations of the body and counteract rolling motions of the body when driving through curves at high speed and during load changes. The RS-tuned dampers are then adjusted accordingly to the road surface conditions and driving situation.
The dynamic handling system Audi drive select influences not only the suspension, but also the quattro drive, the steering, the S tronic, the engine characteristics, and the sound, for example. Depending on the selected equipment, there is a choice of five or six drive modes: comfort, auto, dynamic, efficiency, and individual or, as an alternative to the individual mode, the two new RS-specific modes RS1 and RS2. Via the MMI touch display, the driver can adjust and save the two RS modes individually. Simply pressing the new “RS MODE” steering wheel button provides rapid access to the two new RS modes and the last drive mode selected and allows the driver to switch between modes. This allows the customer to adjust their RS model in an even more individual way and to switch quickly between a dedicated sporty drive mode and a comfort-focused profile.
The RS-tuned progressive steering also conveys close contact with the road even on fast curves. Behind the standard 20-inch or optional 21-inch wheels, the all-new six-piston RS steel brake system works with ventilated and perforated disks measuring 375 millimeters (14.8 in) (front) and 310 millimeters (12.2 in) (rear, not perforated). Their brake calipers are painted black as standard and are available in red as an option. The brake calipers of the optional all-new RS ceramic brake that measures 380 millimeters (15.0 in) (front, ceramic) and 310 millimeters (12.2 in) (rear, steel) are designed in either gray, red, or blue.
Great everyday usability: the space concept
A driving experience and performance values typical for a sports car combined with all the comfort-related advantages of a compact SUV, made possible by the overall concept of the RS Q3: The compact powerhouses are designed as full-fledged five-seaters and while being extremely sporty, they also offer great everyday usability thanks to their high level of variability and the large interior. As standard, the rear bench can be moved longitudinally by 150 millimeters (5.9 in) in the RS Q3 and by 130 millimeters (5.1 in) in the RS Q3 Sportback**, and the inclination of its divided backrest can be adjusted in seven stages. The luggage compartment thus holds 530 liters (18.7 cu ft); with the backrests folded down the figure rises to 1,525 liters (53.9 cu ft) (Sportback: 1,400 liters (49.4 cu ft)).
Driver-oriented: the interior
The athletic exterior design of the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback is continued in the spacious interior. The entire cockpit is very much designed with the driver in mind – the airconditioning control unit, the center console, and the MMI touch display are tilted toward the driver by ten degrees. The RS sport leather steering wheel, flattened at the bottom and including newly designed shift paddles, comes with the new “RS MODE” steering wheel button that allows the driver to control two optional RS modes in the Audi drive select dynamic handling system. The RS-specific displays open automatically in the Audi virtual cockpit plus. Sport seats upholstered with black leather/Alcantara with an RS embossing are fitted as standard. An even sportier variant is available in the form of the RS sport seats in fine nappa leather with an RS-specific honeycomb pattern and integrated head restraints.
RS design packages in red or blue provide color highlights in the interior. The standard ambient lighting package and the multi-color contour/ambient lighting package illuminate the interior of the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback when it is dark.
The architecture of the instrument panel with the MMI touch display and the Audi virtual cockpit in the RS design harmonizes perfectly with the new operating concept. MMI navigation plus, the top-of-the-line system in the infotainment program, offers the same variety of functions as in the large Audi models.
Always up to date: Infotainment and Audi connect
Together with MMI navigation plus, the online services of Audi connect are made available on board at LTE Advanced speed via a permanently installed SIM card. This includes, for example, online traffic information and the online points of interest service, which complements route guidance with photos, opening hours, and user evaluations. Thanks to the inter-connectivity of the Audi fleet, the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback receive and provide information about parking spaces on the roadside, hazard areas, and speed limits, which are detected via the on-board camera and vehicle sensors.
Equipped for all situations: the assist systems
The new RS Q3 and the new RS Q3 Sportback are equipped with numerous standard comfort and safety systems, including the parking system plus as well as lane departure and lane change warnings. The standard scope in Germany also includes Audi pre sense front as well as the protective measures provided by Audi pre sense basic.
The adaptive cruise assist is a highlight among the optional systems. It takes the burden off the driver during longitudinal and lateral guidance. Ultra-modern systems such as the 360 degree cameras offer assistance with parking and maneuvering. They show the direct surroundings of the car on the MMI display and allow the driver to choose from several perspectives. If, for example, the driver wants to back out of an entrance, the rear crosstraffic assist warns about approaching vehicles that the system classifies as critical.
The new RS Q3 and the new RS Q3 Sportback have been on sale at dealerships in Germany and other European countries since the end of 2019.