Audi has finally launched the much awaited and affordable version of its entry level SUV, Q3 S in India. Mercedes has already launched its A and B Class hatchbacks and BMW is all set to launch the famed 1-series on 3rd September.
The Q3 S has come just at the right time to lure buyers and it may help Audi regain and retain its position as the number 1 luxury car maker in India. Audi’s rivals are bringing in entry level luxury hatchbacks to the Indian market but Audi is not following suit. Instead, it is competing directly by offering an existing luxury SUV at around similar price point.
The Q3 S comes with a 2.0-litre diesel which makes 140 bhp unlike the 177bhp in the regular Q3. It’s a front wheel drive layout coupled to a 6-speed manual gearbox.
Despite the Rupee depreciating rapidly in recent months, Audi has managed to price the Audi Q3 S aggressively at Rs 24.99 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
What sets it apart is the pricing and if we compare, Mercedes are offering their A and B class at a similar price point. But the Q3 is an overall better package given it’s spacious dimensions and higher ground clearance. In a very generic way, the Q3 is to Audi as the Ecosport is to Ford.
And yes, leather seats, cruise control, voice command, climate control, Multi Media Interface(MMI) with Bluetooth connectivity and 18-inch alloy wheels will be offered as standard. The LED Daytime Running Lamps(DRL)? Yes, they will be available, but only on the higher variants. Audi Q3 S will be available at all Audi dealerships across the country by the end of this month of August.
With the launch of the 1 series ahead in September, it’s only a matter of time to see who will top the sales-charts this time round.
At this occasion, Audi also launched their third car showroom in Delhi – Audi Delhi Central. The German car maker also announced the launch of Audi Club India which is basically an exclusive ‘Audi Owners Community’ through which customers can come together, interact and will be offered some benefits. Sharmila Nicollet, Baichung Bhutia and Aditya Patel were inducted as the first three members of the club.
– By Vikram Malhotra