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New Audi Q2 vs used Audi Q3: which is best?

Audi is keen for buyers to see the latest Q2 as a premium small SUV, but how does it fare against a used Q3 for the same money?

Words By Max Adams

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New Audi Q2 vs used Audi Q3 – driving

It probably won’t surprise you to learn that the lighter Q2 is faster than the bigger Q3. Both the 1.4 TFSI petrol in the Q2 and the 2.0 TDI diesel in the Q3 have an identical power output of 148bhp. The higher torque figure of the diesel Q3 will make it more relaxing to drive on the motorway, but even the Q2 has enough mid-range shove to negate the need to thrash it.

You also won’t be shocked to find that the Q2 handles more neatly. It still rolls a bit through the corners, but not to the same extend as the Q3 does. The ride can become unsettled on scruffier bits of city-centre Tarmac, but the Q2 generally takes the edge off of bigger bumps quite well at higher speeds.

The reverse is true of the Q3, which deals with low-speed potholes and speed bumps well on standard suspension and 17in alloy wheels, but jostles passengers at higher speeds and thumps into expansion joints on the motorway. The steering doesn’t give you much information on what the front tyres are up to, but grip levels are good, even in tight corners.


New Audi Q2 vs used Audi Q3 – costs

Our favourite Q2 is the 1.4 TFSI Sport, which retails for Β£25,215. But if you use our What Car? New Car Buying service, you can find one for Β£23,631 at the time of publication.

For a bluff-fronted SUV with a petrol engine, fuel economy is rather good. This Q2 has a combined average of 51.4mpg, and the 1.4 TFSI unit can even shut down two of its four cylinders when cruising to help save fuel. Road tax will set you back Β£165 in the first year and then it’ll be a flat rate of Β£140 per year thereafter. Every new Audi comes with a three-year warranty that’s capped at 60,000 miles, but you can pay for extra cover to bring it up to four years and 75,000 miles or five years and 90,000 miles.

The Q2 was too new to be included in our most recent What Car? reliability survey, but Audi as a brand finished in 12th place out of 32 manufacturers – not a bad result.

A used 2017 Q3 with less than 5000 miles will set you back around Β£23,500. It’s more economical, with an average of 62.8mpg and road tax of Β£140. However, it won’t have the same warranty coverage because it's a used car. That said, if you buy your used Q3 through an Audi Used Approved dealer, you get a one-year warranty and roadside assistance.

Audi states that if you buy a used car through its scheme, you also get 12 months' MOT protection, covering you for repairs of up to Β£750 if your vehicle fails the test within 12 months of your purchase. However, it doesn’t cover items such as light bulbs or wipers, which are some of the biggest causes of test failures. Also, it won’t cover the retest fee if your test centre charges for it. So while it sounds great on paper, in reality it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

The Q3 managed to finish smack bang in the middle of our reliability table for small SUVs, with the diesel model finishing in 14th place and the petrol version 15th.

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Review

Audi Q3

What Car? Says Rated 4 out of 5
Owners say Rated 4 out of 5

Compact, good to drive and inexpensive to run, the Audi Q3 deserves to be near the top of your small SUV shopping list.