It’s been over 20 years since Audi took over Lamborghini and then subsequently both became a part of the VW group but we are more interested in the first part. That takeover created that a grudge with people mostly saying Lamborghini had become Audi rather than the other way around. But I tend to disagree, I think they have both become better!
Hold on a minute there and just listen to my reasoning. For starters, the fast but undriveable Lambos have become much more drivable meaning that they are also faster. Plus, the electrics are probably a bit less dodgy now. Then there’s the Audis. Their RS division has become so much better over the years which makes it a prestigious badge to wear.
Undeniably, there is a bit of Urus about the way this RS Q3 looks. Striking lines along the bodywork and that big sloping roof are the obvious one! There’s the vents both real and fake, the exhaust and the list goes on. The elephant in the room here is the green colour. It’s very much pulled from Lambo’s palette. The colour is called Kyalami Green and I think it is just fabulous. It perfectly brings out the character of this car without making it look childish. Other than that, the badges say RS on them and the RSQ3 badges are optionally blacked out. An option that would have probably costed way too much but we will leave that aside.
The interior is probably the most disappointing part of the car for me. Sure, the seats are leather and so is the steering wheel. Build quality is generally very good too as we have come to expect from Audi. But the plastics. They are basically all scratchy and hard. I know it has a 3 on the end of the badge but it is still a $110,000 car! However, the plus side is that because Audi is using their interior tech across so many of the cars these day, you get a really intuitive touch screen and virtual dashboard. Both very good and easy to use. The ambient lighting is cool as well. But that isn’t the important part, it wears an RS badge so can it perform like one?
Who knew the Q3 needed the RS treatment but after driving it, I’m glad they did so! The performance is just incredible. Firstly, that 2.5litre turbo five cylinder makes a fierce burbley sound. A typical odd numbered cylinder noise but oh, it sounds so good under power! It is the same engine as the RS3 which means it produces nearly 300kW and 480Nm of torque. All numbers that don’t mean anything until you put it into context. A context that means it will do 0-100 in 4.5 seconds, blisteringly quick for a small SUV. Even though it has massive wheels, the grip from this skinny tires is just phenomenal and that Quattro system means it doesn’t have an issue with putting its power down.
So the RSQ3 then is quite expensive and has a very plasticky interior but that’s not what the RS badge is about. It’s about the performance, handling and all that which the RSQ3 is very good at! Even though owners of this car will spend most of their time pottering around Newmarket which is actually where I’ve seen most of these, simply knowing that you have this much power will help you sleep well at night. It is an excellent drivers car, who knew a Q3 could be so good? Hmm, it’s almost Lamborghini-esque and with that green, there’s no denying the family connection.