The German automaker, Audi, is working on a lighter and more upmarket Q3 that will arrive at the dealerships in 2018. The current generation of the Q3 is the oldest Q model and with the increased competition within the VW Group (Read VW Tiguan), Audi is making sure that the crossover gets a proper overhaul inside and out.
Under the skin, the existing Q3 uses a running gear that can be traced back to the Mk5 VW Golf. Like several other models within the VW Group, the new version will switch to the ubiquitous MQB platform. This platform is used on everything from the Audi’s TT sports car to the Skoda Kodiaq SUV. The new underpinnings present various advantages such as less weight, more space and the possibility of a plug-in hybrid technology.
The new model will share a footprint similar to the current Q3, but it will be slightly longer and wider by 60mm and 50mm respectively. The wheelbase, meanwhile, is expected to be stretched by 50mm too. This will help boost its practicality as Audi looks to provide more cabin space in the rear. Boot capacity is also expected to increase from the existing 420 litres.
Moreover, the new MQB chassis opens up a range of new engine possibilities for the Q3, with the most significant one being a plug-in hybrid e-tron. However it won’t arrive immediately, and is likely to be introduced a year after the Q3’s launch. The powertrain is expected to include a 1.4-litre TFSI engine and an electric motor. Audi also has the RS Q3 on the cards, which would be the highest variant in this range. It’s likely to use the latest version of Audi’s five-cylinder turbo, which is not only lighter but also more powerful, with 394bhp. As for the current car, the power will be sent to all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox and quattro AWD. The rest of the range will comprise of four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, with displacements ranging between 1.5 and 2 litres.