The Q3 is already a particularly desirable model when compared to the rest of the compact-SUV alternatives, but things are looking more appealing than ever before for the Q3 as Audi has announced they will be introducing a new ‘TFSI-e’ model in 2021. And if it wasn’t immediately obvious, that little ‘e’ at the end stands for electric. Not fully electric - but the Q3 will now be available as a plug-in hybrid in both ‘35’ and ‘45’ performance spec levels.
These models will combine the excellent performance that is readily available with the TFSI engines and combine that strength with a 13kWh Lithium-ion battery to create a powerful yet sustainable output which leaves a reduced carbon footprint. The petrol engine typically has an output of 150PS, but when combined with the electric motor, this figure increases to a healthy 245PS. Better still, the Q3 TFSI-e models will also be able to achieve an electric-only range of 31 miles when tested to WLTP standards, meaning you’re emitting fewer pollutants to the air while driving through built-up urban environments, which is always nice.
Director of Audi UK, Andrew Doyle said; "TFSI e models are a perfect stepping stone on the path to electrification for Audi customers who are keen to play their part in the decarbonisation of our environment, but who are perhaps delaying making the leap of faith to a full EV due to lingering concerns about charging and range,“
"Like our other PHEV models, the new Q3 TFSI e can help to allay those concerns by proving how easily an EV can be assimilated into life, while also offering the safety net of an economical combustion engine which can greatly expand its range and refuelling possibilities if required. It’s a great way to begin gradually embracing the future of mobility.“
Sounds convincing enough, doesn’t it?
We’re all now well aware of the fact that new petrol and diesel car sales will be banned from 2030, so now is the time to at least start considering how you plan to move over to owning a fully electric vehicle. The Q3 offers a safe but satisfying opportunity to dip your toe into the world electric motoring while still remaining well within your comfort zone thanks to the 1.4-litre petrol engine.
Inside the cabin, the plug-in Q3 will be exactly like every other Q3 in the lineup. You’ll be welcomed with high-end materials and a super-advanced level of technology and equipment without any overbearing ‘green’ features that you often find on over-engineered hybrids and electrics. It’s just a normal Audi - something we can all get along with.
Charging will be simple enough. The Q3 TFSI-e models can both be charged using the supplied Type 2 charging cable and a regular domestic AC wall box. This should take about 3 hours and 45 minutes from empty to full. A mode 3 charging cable is also provided free of ‘charge’ to be used for public AC charging locations.
The new Q3 TFSI e models don’t go on sale until Spring 2021 so they’re still a way away at this point, and there is no official pricing thus far, however, we know these will sell well among premium compact SUV buyers so keep an eye out for more news as we go into the New Year.