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Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Sportier looks – but not performance – for this popular SUV

Audi Q3 Sportback (19 on) - rated 4 out of 5
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PROS

  • Slinkier looks broaden Q3’s appeal further
  • Sophisticated interior remains practical
  • Heralds the introduction of mild-hybrid tech

CONS

  • More expensive than the regular Q3
  • Doesn’t look that different either
  • Somewhat ordinary driving experience remains

At a glance

New price £32,375 - £48,145
Lease from new From £350 per month
Road tax cost £145 - £465
Insurance group 23 - 36 How much is it to insure?
New

PROS

  • Slinkier looks broaden Q3’s appeal further
  • Sophisticated interior remains practical
  • Heralds the introduction of mild-hybrid tech

CONS

  • More expensive than the regular Q3
  • Doesn’t look that different either
  • Somewhat ordinary driving experience remains

Audi Q3 Sportback rivals

Such is the continued growth of crossovers, manufacturers are beginning to offer them in multiple bodystyles, hence the introduction of the Audi Q3 Sportback. Wearing a leaner, more athletic outfit, this is effectively a five-door coupe version of the regular Q3 launched in 2018.

It’s slightly lower, narrower but longer, featuring mostly new bodywork. And if you’re wondering why it’s not called Q4, that’s because there’ll be a different range of SUVs wearing that badge in the near future. Currently, the Q3 Sportback has few direct rivals – in its crosshairs is the BMW X2, but other alternatives are not really coupe-like – such as Land Rover’s second-generation Range Rover Evoque and Mercedes-Benz GLA – or they lack Audi’s brand kudos. Kia XCeed, we’re looking at you here.

What's it like inside?

If you’ve spent any time in the latest Q3, then the interior of the Sportback version will come as no surprise, particularly if you’re sat in the front. The contemporary screen-laden dashboard is angled towards the driver, with high-quality tactile touchpoints all around, including the well-damped controls and the textile finishes around the plastic dashboard components.

There’s understandably some difference is the rear as the roof-line is 16mm lower, but essentially a pair of 6ft-tall passengers will be fine back there, with only the back of their heads brushing the headlining. Three adults in the back would be a pinch, but then again, this isn’t a crossover aimed at larger families. The backrest angle can be adjusted on a 60:40 split, while the seat base can be slid forwards and backwards by 30mm.

2019 Audi Q3 Sportback S Line interior

Bootspace is a shade reduced from the SUV version of the Q3, but still offers plenty of room. With the rear bench in place you still have 530 litres of space at your disposal, increasing to a much more accommodating 1,400 litres when the 40:20:40 split seats are folded forwards.

What engines and gearboxes are available?

Sharing a derivation of the Volkswagen Group’s MQB architecture – and underpinnings that are identical to the regular Q3 – the Sportback is available with a familiar range of powertrains. Initial models will have a choice of a 35 TDI (2.0-litre, 150hp diesel) and 45 TFSI Quattro (2.0-litre, 230hp petrol with four-wheel drive).

Before the end of 2019, those will be joined by a 40 TDI Quattro (with 190hp), with a 35 TFSI (1.5-litre, 150hp petrol) to follow that. The more interesting development is that the S Tronic-equipped version of that engine (a twin-clutch automatic gearbox in Audispeak) has a 48-volt mild hybrid system connected to it to boost efficiency and smooth-out acceleration issues. This 48-volt system will also appear in the Q3 SUV and other forthcoming Audis in the months to follow.

Familiar trim level hierarchy

British buyers love up-tempo Audis, meaning that for the Q3 Sportback the entry-level grade is Sport, with S Line – expected to be the most popular here – being one rung higher. Yet, there’s more to come. For a limited production run (set to be dictated by time than a specific quota of models) there’s also the Edition 1 trim, with a flagship Vorsprung specification topping the line-up.

Even the Q3 Sportback Sport – doesn’t exactly trip off the tongue, does it? – comes complete with 18-inch alloy wheels, full LED exterior lighting, 10.25-inch Virtual Cockpit electronic instruments, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, dual-zone climate control, an electric tailgate and six driving modes.

Find out whether the Audi Q3 Sportback could fit your needs as an upmarket crossover for young families by reading the rest of our full review.

>> Audi Q3 SUV full review

>> Best stylish SUVs

Audi Q3 Sportback rivals

Other Audi Q3 models: