IN A mechanical spec-for-spec stoush, the Audi Q2 1.4TFSI is a clear victor over its Q3 older brother. Perhaps not to the extent implied by its lighter weight and smaller frontal area but you can’t dispute 0-100km/h in 8.5sec (0.4 faster than Q3), a top speed of 212km/h (versus 204 for the Q3), and a combined fuel number of 5.2L/100km (5.8 for the Q3).
The entry-level Q2 1.4TFSI is also quicker and more fuel-efficient than its mainstream rivals in the small-SUV category, the most premium of which is the $35,290 Mazda CX-3 Akari AWD (0-100km/h in 8.9sec; 6.7L/100km).
Audi Australia doesn’t necessarily see flagship Mazda CX-3, Nissan Qashqai and Honda HR-V models as rivals for a base Q2, but then “there isn’t really a direct competitor from our two German rivals for a car like the Q2” either. According to Audi Australia communications manager Anna Burgdorf, “something like the Mini Countryman is probably closest” to being Q2’s equal, a head-to-head that’s bound to hot up next year when a new-generation Countryman launches.
As is the case Europe, Audi Australia is set to offer its new Q2 in a special “Edition #1” guise, continuing the current trend towards ‘launch editions’. While the Edition #1’s (yes, the hashtag is intentional) local spec is yet to be confirmed, expect it to closely follow the look of the European version (pictured).
An exclusive Quantum Grey paint colour with Manhattan Grey lower body section, S-line exterior package, a black C-pillar blade with Audi’s four-ringed logo, and black exterior mirrors combines with a titanium black styling package to really toughen the Q2’s striking style. Five-arm 19-inch anthracite black wheels and LED lights at both ends (with ‘dynamic’ rear indicators) complete the Edition #1’s haute-couture appearance.
Inside, the Euro-spec Edition #1 gets sports seats (with fabric/leather trim in black and amaretto), a sports steering wheel, titanium grey headlining, ambient lighting, a leather package and illuminated aluminium door sills.
But there’s more to come on the SUV front from Audi. Set to make its debut alongside the crucial new-generation Audi Q5 at the Paris show on September 29 is a slap-and-tickle for the Q3, to maintain interest in Audi’s oldest SUV.
Centred solely around visual changes to “more sharply differentiate the design and sport trim lines, as well as the S-line exterior package”, the tweaked Q3 also heralds the arrival of a special-edition S-line Competition model.
New bumpers, grille inserts, funky trim and smart alloys all do their best to keep the up-spec Q3 models looking fit and fresh in line with their all-new SUV stablemates.
While a facelifted Q3 range went on sale in Australia in June 2015, and a 270kW RSQ3 Performance will launch here next month, Audi says this update is “not confirmed yet but it’s definitely something we’re evaluating”, according to product communications manager Shaun Cleary.
If these high-grade model updates do make it to our Q3, expect an on-sale in the second half of 2017.