Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

The Parkers VerdictShould you buy an Audi Q3 Sportback?

Would we pick one over a BMW X2 or Range Rover Evoque? No, not if a more engaging driving experience is a high priority, but factor that out and the Audi runs those two much closer. It fully commits to the coupe look like the Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe and BMW X4, but costs less and is therefore more appealing than smaller SUVs from those brands (the GLA and X2).

Based on looks alone the Q3 Sportback should be a commercial success, although whether that will be at the expense of cannibalised sales of its more conventional SUV sibling remains to be seen. While appreciation of styling is subjective, the Sportback’s elegantly tapered, longer silhouette makes it more attractive, regardless of whether you subscribe to the notion of its coupe-ness. Even despite the price premium of around £1,600, the Sportback makes a strong case for itself.

If we’re sticking to the Audi, which version makes the most sense? Trim level-wise S Line is the one to go for and for once we’d suggest limiting the optional extras to a bold, bright metallic paint finish – the bodywork can pull off some vibrant shades, including orange. Unless you must have a long list of technology add-ons, the standard set of equipment is actually comprehensive enough for most, with plenty of features to keep you safe, comfy and entertained on the move.

While its brakes left us a little unsatisfied, for the majority of buyers the 35 TFSI S Tronic with the 48-volt mild-hybrid system makes the most sense. It’s a sensible, pragmatic choice that will offer real-world efficiency, especially for city driving where the stop-start function can turn off the engine at speeds of up to 14mph rather than simply getting to a complete standstill.