It’s bad enough that Audi doesn’t offer its RS Q3 in the United States. Now, to add insult to injury, the automaker is launching an even more potent variant that dons the “Performance” labeling. Joining the RS 6 and RS 7 Performance models unveiled last year is the new RS Q3 Performance.
Instead of a standard 340 horsepower, this one gets 367 hp. It also has a generous 343 pound-feet of torque available. This enables the RS Q3 Performance to accelerate from 0-62 mph in 4.4 seconds and reach a top speed of 167 mph. The standard RS Q3 needs 4.8 seconds to reach 62 mph and is limited to a top speed of 155 mph.
The engine of the RS Q3 is the familiar turbocharged 2.5-liter five-cylinder mill that features in the RS 3 Sportback as well as the previous-generation TT RS. To pump up the power, the engineers needed to optimize the cooling systems and fuel pump. Drive is still to all four wheels, via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
To go along with the uprated powertrain is sports-tuned suspension that sees the vehicle ride around 20 millimeters lower than a stock Q3. Audi’s Drive Select system lets you adjust the performance level of the suspension as well as other dynamic systems such as the transmission and throttle.
You’ll be able to spot the RS Q3 Performance by its matte titanium accents found on elements such as the grille surround, air intake flaps and side window trim strips. The matte titanium finish is also available for the 20-inch wheels offered on the vehicle. One final element unique Audi's Performance offerings is the Ascari blue metallic paint finish seen here. Inside, you’ll find gray faces for the instrument dials plus leather trim with blue stitching. There's also carbon fiber pieces accented with a blue weave.
The RS Q3 Performance makes its world debut on March 1 at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show. To see what else will be at the Swiss show, head to our dedicated hub.