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Audi Q3 Sportback

It’s not difficult to work out how Audi came up with this, the new Q3 Sportback.

Audi may talk about its “elegant coupé-inspired lines, sleek curves and sharp handling,” but the truth is the idea of turning the chunky Q3 into what is undeniably a good looking car literally fell on them.

It happened when a normal Q3 got picked up too quickly on the final production line at the factory where it’s built in Gyor, Hungary.

Needless to say, as it was lifted up on to the conveyor belt to be taken to have its badges fitted, it fell off and landed on its roof.

Luckily, one of the workers spoke German and shouted: “Mein Gott, es ist wunderschön,” which I’m sure you’ll know means “My God it’s beautiful,” and so an idea was born.

The Q3 isn’t just vastly improved by accidentally having its tail end and roof squashed flat.

Q3b

Audi will also introduce a mild hybrid 1.5-litre version called the 35 TFSI, which follows after first deliveries arrive in the UK “in the autumn” .

Early cars will all be turbo charged, 2.0-litre, four cylinder, direct injection petrol and diesels with 230hp from the 45 TFSI quattro and 150hp from the 35TDI.

A 190hp version of the diesel called the 40TDI arrives at around the same time as the 1.5 TFSI MHEV (mild hybrid electric vehicle).

Nothing has been said so far about fuel consumption figures for the MHEV but they should be at least around the 50mpg mark.

Its second and third cylinders cut out when power isn’t needed and its 48 volt electrical system recovers up to 12kW of power during deceleration, feeding it back into a lithium-ion battery.

If a driver lifts off the throttle at speeds of between 24mph and 99mph, the MHEV rolls in neutral or coasts with the engine switched off.

You can order a Q3 Sportback from August in Sport, S line, Edition 1 and top spec Vorsprung trim lines.

Prices haven’t been announced yet, but expect them to start from £32,000 rising to ridiculous.