The Audi Q3 is the premium German alternative to the likes of the Range Rover Evoque in the compact premium SUV sector, but it is no longer the smallest SUV that Audi offers with the coupé-shaped Q2 taking that mantle.

At its entry-level price point, Audi’s Q3 SUV is significantly cheaper than Land Rover’s base-model Evoque.

Of the two models that undercut the baby Range Rover (this Audi and the BMW X1) , the Q3 was the most stylish, however the second generation X1 brought a brutish charm to the segment. Audi had to do something to keep the handily compact and finely finished and detailed – as you would expect from any contemporary Audi – Q3 a strong on-paper case proposition. In 2015, Audi gave the Q3 a mild facelift, with a more prominent front grille, revised engines and more equipment the headline changes.

The Q3 line-up is a simple range to understand. There are three engines on offer, a 1.4-litre and 2.0-litre petrols and a 2.0-litre diesel, while a turbocharged, four-cylinder, 2.5-litre unit is solely used in the RS Q3 in two states of tune. There are three transmissions: a six-speed manual, the 1.4 TFSI  is mated to a six-speed dual-clutch automatic, while seven-speed dual-clutch automatics make up the rest of the range. As for standard equipment Audi has also kept this relatively simple by offering only three trim levels: Sport, S-line Edition and Black Edition, while the recently discontinued RS Q3 got its own going over by the Audi Sport division.

So, does Audi's Q3 have what it takes to compete with rivals like the Evoque and X1? Let's find out.

Save money on your car insurance

Compare quotesCompare insurance quotes

First drives

Find an Autocar car review

Explore the Audi range

Driven this week

  • Renault Captur Dynamique S Nav dCI 110
    First Drive
    26 July 2017
    To keep pace with rivals in this increasingly competitive category, Renault's popular compact crossover has had a mild refresh both inside and out
  • Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid
    First Drive
    25 July 2017
    New top-of-the-line Porsche hybrid, though fast and flexible, is simply too heavy to strike the same sweet sporting compromise as its siblings
  • Caterham Seven 420R Donington Edition
    First Drive
    25 July 2017
    Limited-edition road-legal Caterham track car is a superbly enthralling drive, with enough creature comforts to be used on the road as well. Even more addictive than most of its rangemates
  • McLaren 570S Spider
    First Drive
    25 July 2017
    McLaren has created its most attainable drop-top by removing the roof from the 570S coupé, but none of the car's talent has come away with it
  • 2017 Range Rover Velar
    First Drive
    23 July 2017
    The Range Rover Velar is the most road-biased car Land Rover has made. So does it still feel like a proper part of the family?