Flair and functionality

Lyna Mohammad

With its four-cylinder direct injection units and turbocharging engine, combined with front-wheel drive outputs of 110kW (150hp/250Nm), the all new Audi Q3 delivers powerful, refined and efficient performance.

Power is transferred by a fast-shifting six-speed S tronic transmission while the added hill descent control, activated with just a push of a button, maintains the preset speed on a steep downhill gradient.

Members of the media recently had the opportunity to test drive the new Audi Q3 during a preview session hosted by local authorised Audi dealer, TCY Motors Sdn Bhd.

Using the Audi drive select dynamic handling system with five profiles from markedly comfortable, highly efficient through to out-and-out sporty, the driver can vary the characteristics of the Audi Q3 depending on the driving situation, road conditions orpersonal needs.

Looking much sportier than its predecessor, credited to the striking single frame in octagon design, it is divided up by vertical bars along with the large air inlets and characterises the masculine front-end with its intensive play of light and shadow.

New Audi Q3. PHOTOS: AUDI/BAHYIAH BAKIR
Audi Q3 boasts a 10.25-inch screen digital instrument cluster and a centre console 10.1-inch touchscreen

While the narrow headlights run inwards with their wedge shape, the side view on the other hand epitomises the balance of the exterior design with the symmetrical lighting graphics of the headlights and rear lights. The shoulder line formally connects them and, with strong muscles above the wheel wells, ensures an athletic overall impression.

Larger than the first-gen model for improved space for passengers and luggage, Q3’s contours draw their inspiration from Audi’s Quattro DNA and make the SUV seem even wider while the colour-contrasting wheel arch trims emphasise the off-road look.

The steeply raked D pillars of the body line are supported by a long roof edge spoiler and also flank the rear window at the side, creating an appearance of forward thrust.

A family SUV with great all-round talents, the all new Audi Q3 marks a step forward with its improved spaciousness and versatility, as well as its technology featuring a digital cockpit and a large MMI touch display. New assist systems support the driver when parking, in town and on long journeys, which also enhances comfort, as does the further developed suspension.

Stepping into the cabin of the Q3’s driver-focussed premium interior, the ambient lighting can be changed to colours of your liking. Driver and passengers alike feel a sense of comfort, as vital components are within reach and comfortable seats provide a sporty position with the steering wheel steeply angled accordingly.

Additionally, for the premium model, there is the Audi phone box for wireless Qi device charging, and along with the USB type A, it also features a USB type C port, which is a first here in Brunei.

The interior continues the design of the exterior and echoes in many ways the brand’s full-size models featuring a driver-oriented and sporty interior with taut lines and 3D styled elements.

The architecture harmonises perfectly with the new operating concept, where the central element is the MMI touch display with its high-gloss black glass-look surround. Together with the air conditioning controls underneath, it is tilted 10 degrees toward the driver and all displays, buttons and controls are located ergonomically.

The operating and display concept of the SUV has been overhauled from the ground up, and Audi has done away with the analogue instruments. Even the base equipment includes a digital instrument cluster with a 10.25-inch screen diagonal, which the driver operates using the multi-function steering wheel.

With the top-of-the-line equipment MMI navigation plus, the displays appear in the Audi virtual cockpit, which offers many additional functions. There is also a 10.1-inch touch display in the middle of the dashboard. The intuitive operating concept with its flat menu structure is supplemented by natural-language voice control. It also understands freely structured wording. The ingenious dialogue manager asks questions if necessary, allows corrections, offers choices and defers to the speaker when interrupted.

The Q3 offers a generous and variable space concept compared with its predecessor. It is 4,484 millimetres long, 1,849 millimetres wide (with 17- and 18-inch wheels) and 1,585 millimetres high without a roof antenna (1,616 millimetres with antenna). Its wheelbase, which has been stretched by 77 millimetres, is spacious yet, at the same time, extremely versatile. The three-way split backrests in the ratio of 40:20:40 can be tilted in seven stages offering generous storage and luggage compartment package.

Depending on the position of the rear seats and backrests, the luggage compartment capacity is between 530 and 1,525 litres. The loading floor can be adjusted up to three levels and the parcel shelf can be stowed underneath the floor.

Additionally, for extra convenience, there is the electric tailgate, which can also be opened and closed with a kicking motion.

The Audi Q3 is a real all-rounder, whether for holiday drives or everyday life, it combines the flair of a coupé with the functionality of an SUV.