Audi has confirmed details of the latest version of its hot RS Q3 SUV. With even more power, fewer emissions, an updated exterior and more standard equipment, the RS we shouldn’t like but definitely do faces its jacked-up rivals with more ammo than ever.
Power from its turbocharged 2.5-litre five-pot is up by 29bhp to 335bhp, whilst torque rises from 310 to 332lb ft, enabling the RS Q3 to sprint from 0-62 in 4.8sec and onto an electronically limited 155mph. This brings it directly into line with its archrival, the Mercedes GLA 45 AMG, which has exactly the same performance figures despite possessing 20 more bhp.
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The RS Q3’s standard seven-speed S-tronic DSG transmission has been improved for faster gear changes, with the ‘box's setup providing fast acceleration in lower cogs and leggier gearing up top for cruising.
The interior and exterior have both received light updates, with a tightened up face and updated trim bringing the RS Q3 bang up-to-date with the rest of the Audi range. The interior features Fine Nappa leather with contrast stitching, and a driver’s information system with a special RS menu – including a lap timer, oil temperature and boost pressure - to satisfy your inner child.
The RS Q3’s updated powertrain is now EU6-compliant, as is the rest of the Q3 range which has also seen similar updates. Buyers of both the RS Q3 and Q3 are faced with a larger list of standard equipment, including dual-zone climate control, a Concert audio system with 6.5-inch manually retractable colour display screen, Bluetooth interface, Audi Music Interface iPod connection and light and rain sensors.
Engines elsewhere in the standard Q3 range offer 13 per cent better fuel economy and up to 10bhp more power. A new option, the 1.4 TFSI, comes equipped with cylinder-on-demand tech to further improve efficiency.
Prices for the RS Q3 will be confirmed closer to its January 2015 launch, but we expect them to gently increase on the outgoing car’s £43,000. The normal Q3 is available to order now, and is priced between £25,340 to £30,820 OTR.