ThereвЂ™s an all-new version of the Audi Q3 on the way – and now our spy photographers have snapped evidence that a hot SQ3 wonвЂ™t be far behind it.
The current Q3 is one of the oldest models in the VW GroupвЂ™s line-up; indeed, it still sits on a platform (PQ35) that shares many components with the Mk5 VW Golf. So the new Q3 will move across to the MQB A1 architecture – and this, in turn, opens up a new range of transmissions and engines for the model, as well as the prospect of electrification.
Image 8 of 19
Image 8 of 19
These pics show that the line-up will include at least one performance variant: the SQ3. ItвЂ™s likely to take advantage of the forthcoming Q3вЂ™s larger footprint to help with stability and handling – and to get a four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine producing around 306bhp, as seen in the S3 hatchback. Expect it to be a dual-clutch automatic only, and to feature quattro all-wheel drive as standard.
The spy pics show again how the next Q3 will get a longer wheelbase than the current car, helping to improve cabin accommodation, especially for rear-seat passengers. They also show how the SQ3 will get a modified front bumper with deeper air intakes and a lower splitter, and a pair of twin-tailpipe exhausts at the rear end.
The SQ3 is likely to be joined by an RS Q3, giving the VW Group a viable rival for the next generation of MercedesвЂ™ AMG GLA 45. AudiвЂ™s performance division will have a choice of possible engines for such a vehicle; the five-cylinder turbocharged motor from the RS3 is the most likely option, although the VW Group is also working on a range of four-cylinder powerplants that could offer up to 400bhp.
The new Q3 is due to arrive in showrooms before the end of this year. WeвЂ™d expect the SQ3 to follow within six months of that carвЂ™s launch – and for the RSQ3 to be in dealerships by the start of 2020.
Click here for all the latest on the next-generation Audi Q3…