First Drive

Audi RS Q3 SUV review, test drive

It's an RS. And it's an Audi. But it's an SUV. Will it work?

DETAILS
9
photos
An RS badge is exciting, even more so when it’s on an Audi. It’s not just about a sporty body kit or a more powerful engine. Rather, it’s also about an assurance that the standard car has shed some of its cold personality and made provisions for thrills, even as it retains most of its everyday usability and comfortable nature. The RS Q3 is the first SUV from Audi to sport an RS badge, and I’m driving it through the Swiss Alps to see just how RS-ish a luxury SUV can really get. 
 
The key to the RS is its turbocharged 2.5-litre, 20-valve in-line five – an engine configuration first seen on the original Quattro rally car in 1980. It puts out its hefty 42.8kgm of peak torque from as low as 1500rpm and the torque curve remains flat all the way to 5200rpm. The all-wheel-drive traction, perfectly matched gear ratios and a smooth-revving engine all combine to produce jet engine-like thrust in every gear well and at all engine speeds. 
 
 
Just to give you an example of how potent the performance is, let’s take a look at the figures. Claimed time to 100kph for this near-1.8 tonne car is a phenomenal 5.5 seconds, and it’ll hit its limited top speed of 250kph without you noticing. These figures might not sound staggering on a performance car, but remember, we’re talking about an SUV here. 
 
Anyone who has driven, or even heard, the old Audi five-pot turbo working hard in the original Quattro might expect a similar aural experience here. And on one level, they won’t be disappointed; the distinctive thrum of that in-line five is successfully recreated. But the raw beat of the Quattro has been replaced largely by a more refined snarl.  Continued..

Fact File

Price Range (in lakhs)*

Ex-showroom price Rs 58 lakh (estimated)

Engine

Installation Front, transverse, AWD
Type 5 cyls, 2480cc, direct-injection turbocharged petrol
Power 306bhp at 5200-6700rpm
Torque 42.82kgm at 1500-5200rpm

Transmission

Type AWD
Gearbox 7-speed, dual clutch auto

Dimensions

Length 4410mm
Width 1831mm
Height 1602mm
Boot volume 356 litres

Economy

Tank size 64 litres

Audi RS Q3 SUV review, test drive

notSet

With a whole lot of new cars being launched just around the corner, there’s a lot to be excited about in the coming months. Read our annual rundown of the most exciting cars worth waiting for.
What's in this issue?

Most Read
Find a car review

Latest Car Reviews

New Mahindra Scorpio review, test drive

New Mahindra Scorpio review, test drive

6 days ago
Mahindra has made massive changes to its popular body-on-frame SUV, the...
New Skoda Rapid diesel auto review, test drive

New Skoda Rapid diesel auto review, test drive

Sep 22, 2014
With the introduction of an automatic gearbox and a new option package, the...
New Volkswagen Polo GT TDI review, test drive

New Volkswagen Polo GT TDI review, test drive

Sep 22, 2014
The updated VW Polo GT TDI gets the new 103bhp 1.5-litre diesel engine, but...
Mercedes-Benz GLA 200 CDI India review, test drive

Mercedes-Benz GLA 200 CDI India review, test drive

Sep 17, 2014
We take the diesel-powered Mercedes-Benz GLA compact luxury SUV for a spin...
Mercedes-Benz GLA 200 India review, test drive

Mercedes-Benz GLA 200 India review, test drive

Sep 15, 2014
Mercedes GLA brings an added shot of panache to the compact luxury SUV...
Latest News
Volkswagen XL-Sport concept unveiled
Sleek Ducati Motorcycle-engined concept produces 197bhp from its 1199cc...
2 hours ago   2 pictures
Lamborghini Asterion hybrid coupe concept unveiled
New V10-engined, 898bhp plug-in hybrid Lamborghini Asterion concept has been...
3 hours ago   4 pictures
Audi TT Sportback concept revealed
Audi TT Sportback concept joins TT Allroad and TT Offroad models in the new...
3 hours ago   3 pictures
Land Rover Discovery Sport first look
The Discovery Sport has been unveiled just ahead of Paris Motor Show 2014,...
4 hours ago   6 pictures
Infiniti Q80 Inspiration Concept revealed at Paris
Range-topping Infiniti Q80 inspiration concept gets a 543bhp hybrid powertrain.
4 hours ago   12 pictures

Autocar Magazine

Issue: 182 | October 2014

With a whole lot of new cars being launched just around the corner, there’s a lot to be excited about in the coming months. Read our annual rundown of the most exciting cars worth waiting for.
Autocar Magazine
Latest Poll
Does brand Maruti Suzuki finally have the appeal to take on Honda's City with the Ciaz?


or View results
Yes
  50%
 
No
  50%
TOTAL VOTES: 1379

Vote now
View previous Polls »