Only hours after we posted the first pictures of the Audi's hot compact SUV, the brand with the four-ring logo came out with a plethora of official images and details on the new RS Q3, which will be displayed at the 2013 Geneva International Motor Show in early March.
The transformation from the concept model we saw at last year's Beijing auto show to a production car brought only a few minor cosmetic changes, such as the replacement of the carbon fiber trims inside and out with aluminum or black-colored parts, and a de-tuning of the TT RS- and RS3-sourced 2.5-liter turbocharged unit, dropping power from 350hp (355PS) to 306hp (310PS).
The inline-five, which produces a peak torque figure of 420Nm (309.8 lb-ft) available between 1,500 and 5,200 rpm, is connected to a standard seven-speed S tronic dual clutch transmission that transfers power to all four corners via Audi's quattro permanent all-wheel drive system with a hydraulically operated and electronically controlled multi-plate clutch located at the rear axle.
So how fast is the production RS Q3? According to Ingolstadt, it takes 5.5 seconds to complete the sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62mph), and its top speed is electronically governed to 250 km/h (155mph). As far as fuel economy is concerned, the performance version of the Q3 series returns a combined figure of 8.8lt/100 km (26.73 US mpg or 32.1 UK mpg).
To improve handling, quattro engineers tweaked the suspension and lowered the ride height by 25mm (about an 1 inch), placed the battery in the luggage compartment (for better weight distribution), and added ventilated and perforated brake discs up front and larger discs at the back gripped by eight-piston calipers.
Furthermore, the electronic stabilization control (ESC) has a sport mode, and it can also be deactivated entirely, while there's a Launch Control function as well. Audi says the RS Q3 weighs in at 1,730 kg (3814.00 lb).
On the outside, Audi made sure to separate the RS model from the plebeian Q3s through a number of visual highlights, such as the exclusive 19-inch or optionally, 20-inch wheels, body accents and roof rails in matt aluminum, high-gloss black honeycomb front grille, RS front bumper, a rear diffuser with a single oval tailpipe and a roof spoiler.
The interior is upgraded with bespoke sport seats upholstered in black Alcantara and leather, with diamond stitching offered as an option, a revised instrument cluster with gray gauges and white scales and red pointers, a flat –bottom steering wheel, and plenty of aluminum trims and parts.
First deliveries in Europe will start this fall, with pricing in Germany to start from €54,600 or about US$73,100.