Technology trickles down from above to make the new 2019 Audi Q3 smarter

Audi wasn’t kidding when it said 2018 would be one of the busiest years in its history. The company has unveiled the brand-new 2019 Q3 a week after it introduced the updated TT range and a few short weeks after it expanded its SUV lineup with the range-topping Q8.

In America, where we don’t get the pocket-sized Q2, the Q3 will continue to occupy the bottom spot in Audi’s crossover and SUV hierarchy. Designers gave the second-generation model a bolder, sharper look that borrows styling cues like a thin, wide grille with a chromed frame and vertical slats from the aforementioned Q8. Flared wheel arches and contoured taillights add a muscular touch to the design.

The Q3 follows Audi’s shift towards more high-tech interiors. It’s offered with a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, called “virtual cockpit” in Audi-speak, that the driver can configure using buttons located on the multi-function steering wheel. The center console houses a more basic version of the excellent MMI Touch Response infotainment system found in bigger models, including the A6 and the A7. The graphics and key functions look the same, but the big difference is that the Q3 has one screen instead of two so it retains manual dials for the climate control. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility both come standard, and internet-connected navigation with Google Earth integration is offered at an extra cost.

Audi notes it made the Q3 nearly four inches longer than its predecessor. The extra sheet metal won’t bump it into the next segment up but it’s enough to clear up more space for passengers, especially the ones sitting in the second row. Properly configured, the Q3 offers a reclining rear bench that slides by about six inches. Trunk space checks in at 23.8 cubic feet with five occupants on board and 53.9 cubes with the rear seats folded flat.

Audi hasn’t released powertrain specifications for the American-spec Q3. With that said, our version of the SUV will likely receive a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine tuned to provide 230 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. It will spin all four wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive system. Expect a hotter SQ3 and, if we’re lucky, a high-performance RS Q3 to arrive later in the production run.

The 2019 Audi Q3 will reach showrooms across Europe before the end of the year. Dealers in the United States will begin receiving the model in 2019. And, believe it or not, the Q3 isn’t the last new car we’ll see from Audi this year. The brand is putting the final touches on the e-tron quattro, its first series-produced electric model, and will show it to the public before the end of the year.

Product Review

By adding features, tech, and all-wheel drive, Mazda puts the 3 in a class of one

Since its introduction in 2003, Mazda’s compact Mazda3 has been a mainstay of the brand’s driver-oriented strategy. Mazda now plans to move upmarket, and the all-new 2019 Mazda3 offers some clues about how that’s going to work.
Product Review

2019 Volkswagen Jetta offers German refinement and tech at an affordable price

With enough tech to make villains jealous, the Volkswagen Jetta punches above its class as a forward-thinking sedan. Spacious, comfortable, and efficient, the Jetta is a refined offering. German refinement comes with a serious attitude.
Product Review

Who needs a Range Rover? BMW’s X7 has better tech and just as much luxury

The 2019 BMW X7 is the German automaker’s long-overdue entry into the full-size luxury SUV segment. Packing three rows of seats and plenty of tech, can the new BMW take on Mercedes-Benz and Land Rover?
Cars

FWD vs. RWD vs. AWD: How the wheels that turn change the way you drive

Let's face it, you've likely heard front-, rear-, and all-wheel drive mentioned before in some context or another. But what do these terms mean, especially in terms of performance? We’ve got the answers.
Product Review

The Ferrari Portofino is the super stallion you’ll want to drive every day

With the introduction of the Portofino, Ferrari addresses the California T’s stylistic shortcomings while improving comfort, convenience, and performance. There’s little “entry-level” about this super stallion.
Cars

Autonomous shuttle rides coming to New York City via Optimus Ride

Workers at the Brooklyn Navy Yard in NY City will soon be able to make their way around the 300-acre industrial park in Optimus Ride's self-driving shuttles. The tech startup says it's the first trial of its kind in the state.
Product Review

Chris is the virtual co-pilot phone-obsessives need in their car

Driving while using your phone is dangerous, and often illegal. Meet Chris, the digital assistant for your car that wants to help keep your hands off your phone, and your eyes on the road.
Cars

Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi group uses Microsoft cloud platform for connected cars

The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance is launching a new cloud platform for its cars. Based on Microsoft Azure, the Alliance Intelligent Cloud will enable features like connected services and over-the-air updates.
Cars

The 2019 Toyota C-HR gains a popular tech feature as its price comes down

Toyota has updated the C-HR, its entry-level crossover, by adding an entry-level trim level to the lineup. Every model regardless of price also comes standard with an 8.0-inch touchscreen compatible with Apple CarPlay.
Cars

The 2020 Porsche Cayenne Coupe is an exercise in form-over-function design

Porsche expanded its lineup of SUVs with a swoopier evolution of the Cayenne named Cayenne Coupe. Don't let the name fool you: it still has four doors. It stands out with a fastback-like roofline that's lower than the Cayenne's.
Cars

Protect yourself and your ride with our favorite dash cams

Dashboard cameras can assist drivers in car accident claims, settle speeding ticket disputes, and even catch glimpses of incoming meteors, among other things. Here, we've compiled a list of the most noteworthy offerings available.
Cars

Tesla revives its referral program with chances to win a Roadster

Tesla has revived its referral program that ended in February because of cost pressures. This time around the perks aren't quite as diverse, though it does offer regular chances to win a Roadster or Model Y.
Cars

Tesla ends scheduled servicing because electric cars need less maintenance

Tesla will longer offer scheduled maintenance plans, switching to an "as needed" model. This reflects the fact that electric cars need less regular maintenance than gasoline or diesel cars.
Cars

The go kart-like Mini Cooper will soon add zero emissions to its resume

Mini is in the final stages of developing an electric version of the Cooper. The 2020 Cooper SE will receive powertrain components from the BMW i3, including a 181-horsepower electric motor and battery technology.