2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback Review: Grün Punkt

Derryn Wong
2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback Singapore

Brash and punky, the Audi RS Q3 Sportback shows the difference design and colour can make

SINGAPORE – This is the Audi RS Q3 Sportback, and no; Despite the looks, it’s certainly not faster or louder than its brother. 

Earlier this year, we drove the RS Q3 ‘non-Sportback’ and declared it a riotous, fun, mini-monster which is all the car you could sanely need. 

2021 Audi RS Q3 
Here’s the ‘non Sportback’ RS Q3 – read our in-depth review of it to background the Sportback model

With that in mind, the Audi RS Q3 Sportback is a riotous, fun, mini-monster, which is all the ‘loudly’ sporty car you could sanely need. 

The regular Q3 and Q3 Sportback are the same, slightly differently shaped peas in Audi’s small SUV pod – only as a coupe-SUV, the Sportback has a lower, more sloping roofline that’s most obvious from the rear.

2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback Singapore

So to no one’s surprise, the RS Q3 and RS Q3 Sportback drive almost identically. Drive them back to back and you’ll feel them as 95 percent the same.

Mechanically they’re almost twins too: Audi’s fabulous 2.5-litre turbo inline five-cylinder engine is the centre of the experience – its most unique powerplant and one it really should chuck into all of its RS cars just for the hell of it. Then there’s uptuned suspension, brakes, chassis, more go-faster bits all over. 

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Just like bigger RS cars, the RS Q3 SB can summon up a huge amount of pace at a touch of the ‘RS’ button on the wheel – you can select one of two presets from it. 400hp and bespoke running gear turn the small SUV into a road rally style experience, ripping from corner to corner with glee and lots of grip. 

2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback Singapore  interior

Like most RS cars, it can handle going slow too. Sling all of the settings into snail mode, and it’s just a little louder and slightly stiffer than a normal Q3 Sportback. 

But is there a real difference between the two? There’s less headroom in the Sportback, since it’s 45mm lower, but Audi claims the boot space is almost identical – both have 530-litres, though the Sportback has 1,400 litres with the seats folded down, compared to 1,525-litres on the SUV. 

2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback Singapore boot

It’s a real ball, Audi Sport has successfully compressed the RS experience into a small SUV that is the opposite of boring. 

If after reading all that you still feel the RS Q3 Sportback is sportier/faster/grungier/louder than its non-coupe sibling, well that’s your eyes doing the hearing.

The Sportback in (very similar to Porsche Lizard Green) Kyalami Green catches eyes in a way its sibling – in more understated Daytona Grey – never did, and probably wouldn’t even in the same shade. 

2021 Audi RS Q3 Sportback Singapore - nameplate

Audi RS Q3 Sportback

Engine2,498cc, inline 5, turbocharged 
Power400hp at 5850-7000rpm
Torque480Nm at 1950-5850rpm
Gearbox7-speed dual-clutch 
0-100km/h4.5 seconds 
Top Speed250km/h
Fuel Efficiency9.0L/100km
VES Band / CO2C2 / 207g/km
AgentPremium Automobiles
PriceS$309,390 with COE (sans options)
Verdict See RS Q3 verdict but with less headroom, more coupe-ness


About the Author

Derryn Wong

CarBuyer's chief editor brings 15 years of experience in automotive journalism. Previously, he was the editor for Top Gear Singapore, and a presenter for CNA's Cruise Control motoring segment. He's contributed to The Business Times, Today, and many other publications, and also covered technology as editor of Stuff magazine. An avid motorcyclist and photographer, he is the Chief Slave of two cats. Follow him on Instagram @werryndong

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