Audi Q3 Sportback Review & Prices
The Audi Q3 Sportback is a more stylish alternative to your average boxy SUV, although others are more fun to drive and have more room for passengers
Find out more about the Audi Q3 Sportback
That said, the Audi Q3 Sportback’s huge grille, angular intakes and intricate headlights look almost identical to those on the standard Q3. Peek around the back, however, and you’ll spot sharper creases on the doors and a super slinky, sloping roof that looks more like it belongs on a sleek coupe than a high-riding SUV.
If you’re expecting this theme to continue inside, you might be a bit disappointed. Everything, from the central touchscreen to the layered dashboard layout and optional Alcantara trims, is exactly the same as you’ll find in the regular Q3.
Thankfully, this means everything feels very well put together, and most of the Q3 Sportback’s materials are soft and yielding. The infotainment system, with its gorgeous sat-nav and standard smartphone mirroring features, is another highlight.
Where some small SUVs try to look like sportier by putting on a set of jaunty bumpers and some fancy trims, the Q3 Sportback genuinely looks like a high-riding coupe
Less praiseworthy is the Audi Q3 Sportback’s passenger space. Sure, there’s plenty of room in the front for tall drivers to stretch out, but that sloping roofline means headroom in the back is limited at best. Things get even tighter if you slide the seats forward to carry lots of luggage in the boot.
At least the Audi Q3 Sportback’s large load bay means you shouldn’t need to do this very often. It’s more spacious than the boots in the X2, Evoque and XC40 and can carry very nearly as much as the regular Q3 with the back seats folded down.
If you do plan to carry plenty of heavy luggage, the 40 TDI diesel is the engine to go for. It’s also the most economical if you do lots of motorway journeys, but the 35 TFSI petrol unit is better in town, the 45 TFSI petrol version is noticeably faster, and the 45 TFSI e plug-in hybrid will be cheapest to run if you can keep its batteries charged.
Whichever engine you pick, you’ll find the Audi Q3 Sportback is pretty relaxing to travel in thanks to its sound-deadening windscreen and standard safety kit that helps prevent collisions. It’s especially comfortable if you get a high-spec car with adaptive suspension and adaptive cruise control as standard.
Choosing a range-topping model makes the already rather pricey Audi Q3 Sportback even more expensive, though – especially when you consider that the standard Q3 is cheaper and better at carrying passengers. If, however, you’re looking for a stylish SUV that’s packed with kit, has a big boot and won’t be mistaken for a jacked-up hatchback, then the Audi Q3 Sportback is worth a closer look.
If the Audi Q3 Sportback sounds like the car for you, head on over to our Audi Q3 Sportback deals page to see how much you could save when you buy through carwow. You can also check out the latest used Audi Q3 Sportback stock and browse other used Audi models. And when it comes time to move on your current car, carwow's Sell My Car service makes it easy.
The Audi Q3 Sportback has a RRP range of £34,900 to £50,930. However, with carwow you can save on average £1,472. Prices start at £33,713 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £399. The price of a used Audi Q3 Sportback on carwow starts at £21,000.
Our most popular versions of the Audi Q3 Sportback are:
|Model version||carwow price from|
|35 TFSI Sport 5dr||£33,713||Compare offers|
The Q3 Sportback is available in three different trim levels – Sport, S Line and Black Edition. Then there are three TFSI petrol and two TDI diesel engines, plus the TFSI e plug-in hybrid to choose from – the engine choices match those of the regular Q3.
Each engine has a number that corresponds to how much power it has – the higher the number, the more powerful, essentially. The petrol-powered 35 TFSI, 40 TFSI and 45 TFSI have 150hp, 190hp and 245hp, respectively. The diesel-powered 35 TDI and 40 TDI have 150hp and 200hp respectively, and the 45 TFSI e plug-in hybrid has 245hp.
The 35 TFSI is the only engine available with a manual or S tronic dual-clutch automatic. All the other engines are automatic as standard and those with 190hp or more have quattro four-wheel-drive.
Alternatives to the Q3 Sportback include the BMW X2, DS 7, Jaguar E-Pace, Range Rover Evoque, Mercedes GLA and Volvo XC40. The X2 and Evoque cost a bit less than the Q3 Sportback, the rest cost more. However, it’s not quite as simple as just comparing entry-point prices. You have to compare specifications and standard features, too, at which point the price gaps close up.
The Audi Q3 Sportback is just as happy driving in town, on the motorway or on a twisty road, but rear visibility is compromised by the sloping roofline
The Q3 Sportback is a relatively compact size, so driving around town presents no issues. Visibility out of the front is excellent, less so out of the back. The sloping roofline creates quite a large blindspot and the back window is tiny, which doesn’t help when reversing into a parking space. You do at least get rear parking sensors as standard that let you know if you’re about to hit something you can’t see.
You’ll easily find a driving position that works for you because there’s a very wide range of adjustment in the seat and steering wheel. The suspension is firmer in S Line and Black Edition models than in the Sport, but they all give a perfectly comfortable ride on the UK’s ruined roads. You can spec softer suspension on the S Line and Black Edition, or pay a bit more for adaptive suspension.
The TFSI e plug-in hybrid’s 31 miles of electric range make it the best option for driving around town. If that’s beyond your budget, the 35 TFSI is likely to be the most cost-efficient option. Annoyingly, the automatic gearbox can be a bit unresponsive when pulling away from stationary but, where available, the manual is light and slick.
On the motorway
The Q3 Sportback is a fine motorway cruiser. It’s quiet and comfortable (even with the firmer sports suspension), feels solid as a rock and all the engines are more than up to the task of doing 70mph all day. Though the more powerful ones get up to speed quicker and cope more easily with a full load of passengers and/or luggage.
The diesel engines are the best bet if you do lots of motorway miles. The 35 TDI is the most efficient, but the 40 TDI feels like it’s making less effort. Still, for occasional long trips, the 40-ish-mpg you’ll get from the petrol engines is perfectly acceptable.
On a twisty road
The Q3 Sportback is competent enough on a winding country road. The front wheels take the car to exactly where you’ve pointed the steering wheel. Going round corners, the body stays upright and it doesn’t become unsettled over lumps and bumps in the road. As in town, there’s a slight delay in response from the gearbox when you stamp on the throttle to overtake, which can be irritating. All the engines have more than enough power to make rapid progress – the 245hp 45 TFSI is the fastest.
All good stuff, then, tardy gearbox aside. But the Q3 Sportback lacks a sense of connection between driver and car that makes driving on a twisty road satisfying. If that matters to you, the BMW X1, Ford Kuga and Mini Countryman will be more your cup of tea. Or you could push the boat out and get the bonkers, 400hp Audi RS Q3 Sportback.
More importantly for this kind of car, the Q3 Sportback feels safe and stable and is happy to be driven as fast (or slow) as you want to go.
The Audi Q3 Sportback has a big boot and the front seats are spacious, but the coupe-like roof causes more problems by limiting headroom for those in the back
You should be able to get comfortable in the front of the Q3 Sportback however tall you are. There’s loads of legroom and stacks of headroom if you lower the height-adjustable seats as far as they’ll go. They’re a little firm, perhaps, but supportive and really rather comfy. A long day sat in them is unlikely to cause any aches or pains.
For storage there’s vast door bins, a deep cubby hole under the centre armrest, two cupholders in the centre console and a tray in front of the gearstick for your phone – you’ll also find two USB charging ports there. A pocket under the front passenger seat for the owner’s manual means there’s lots of space in the glovebox.
Space in the back seats
Space in the back could be a problem if you need to take anyone much more than average height with you. There are no issues with legroom, especially in high-spec models that have a sliding back seat. But the sloping roofline reduces headroom significantly. Kids will be fine for space, but they may struggle to see out of the small, high back windows.
There are two sets of ISOFIX mounts on the back seat, but it’s a proper faff to install a child seat in them. There’s another set on the front passenger seat, but that may not be ideal, either. The Q3 Sportback works relatively well if you have bigger kids, but alternatives like the Toyota RAV4, Hyundai Tucson and Ford Kuga are much more family friendly. And adults will be happier to ride in the back of any of those models.
The Q3 Sportback matches the regular Q3’s boot space of up to 675 litres with the sliding back seats moved all the way forward. That’s more than any other compact premium SUV. Even in cars without the moveable seat, there’s still a class-leading 530-litre capacity. That’s plenty to swallow everything most families will need to take on a week-long holiday. However, bear in mind that the sloping roofline restricts your ability to really cram stuff in.
How does that compare to similar alternatives? Well, the BMW X2 has 470 litres of space, while the Volvo XC40 lags further behind on 443 litres. The Audi has even more than non-coupe-SUV options like the Mercedes GLA (435 litres) and doesn't fall far short of the DS 7's 555 litres.
There’s some extra storage under the boot floor, plus more at the sides. The back seats fold down in three parts if you need to do a heavy-duty flat-pack furniture shopping trip, or something similar.
The plug-in hybrid Q3 Sportback has significantly less boot space because the batteries, which are mounted under the boot floor, take up a lot of space.
The infotainment system has a sharp display and responds quickly to your inputs, but the quality and design of the interior is something of a mixed bag
Alternatives like the DS 7 and Range Rover Evoque – not to mention other Audis – have a more stylish interior than the Audi Q3 Sportback. But it’s generally clearly laid out and all the knobs and buttons are easy to find while you’re driving, though the gear lever does obscure some buttons low down on the dashboard.
Quality isn’t as good as you’d expect of an Audi. The things you touch most often feel suitably premium, but there are a few too many surfaces made from cheaper plastics that don’t feel so posh. It’s fine in isolation, but doesn’t feel anything like as special as the Evoque’s interior.
Audi’s 10.1-inch touchscreen infotainment system works well. The graphics look sharp and the screen responds promptly, so navigating the menus is straightforward. Or you can use voice commands. Sat nav with 3D mapping, DAB radio, Bluetooth and various apps are among the many features. Or you can connect your phone and use Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.
Other standard features include a digital driver’s display, dual-zone climate control, cruise control and a host of other stuff. To some extent all the trim levels have similar standard features. Different exterior and interior styling details, including wheels and seats, mark them out from each other.
The Q3 Sportback gives competitive fuel economy with any of the engines available. According to official figures, the 35 TFSI can do 43mpg, the 40 TFSI can do 34mpg and the 45 TFSI 32mpg. Turning to the diesels, the 35 TDI can do 55mpg and the 40 TDI can do 42mpg.
Most economical is the 45 TFSI e plug-in hybrid which can do a claimed 148mpg. In the real world, you won’t even get close to that. But, if you keep the batteries topped up to maximise use of the electric range, you should see economy similar to the 35 TDI. It only takes a couple of hours to fully recharge at home using a 7kW wallbox charger.
CO2 emissions for petrol and diesel models range between 142g/km and 198g/km. Annual vehicle excise duty (VED) costs £165 after the car’s first birthday. Spend more than £40,000 on a Q3 Sportback and you’ll also incur an extra £520 per year in VED from the car’s first to sixth birthdays. The plug-in hybrid is the best option for company car drivers, its 45g/km emissions translating to low benefit-in-kind rates.
Car safety experts Euro NCAP haven’t assessed the Q3 Sportback itself. However, they did assess the regular Q3 and awarded it a full five star rating. It scored 95% for protecting adults in a crash, and very high marks in every other area Euro NCAP assesses.
There’s loads of safety features including automatic emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist and a speed limiter.
Audi has a fine reputation for building high quality cars, established over many decades. The Q3 continues that tradition, picking up top-50 placings in several owner satisfaction surveys, and there’s every reason to think the Q3 Sportback will be as much of a pleasure to own. There have been a few recalls that affected very small numbers of cars in the UK, but you don’t have to worry about them when buying new. If any recalls are issued, the problem is fixed by Audi free of charge. You get a three-year/60,000-mile warranty as standard.
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*Please contact the dealer for a personalised quote, including terms and conditions. Quote is subject to dealer requirements, including status and availability. Illustrations are based on personal contract hire, 9 month upfront fee, 48 month term and 8000 miles annually, VAT included.