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The Audi Q3 is a desirable and capable contender that fails to engage its driver, which ultimately, leaves it trailing the BMW X1 and the Range Rover Evoque

The Audi Q3 is the premium German alternative to the likes of the Range Rover 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 BMW 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.

Mechanically, the Q3 has a lot in common with a regular hatch

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. 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 BMW X1? Let's find out.


Audi Q3 2011-2018 First drives