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The Q3’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Seltos doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
The Q3 has a standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Seltos doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Q3. But it costs extra on the Seltos.
The Q3 Prestige has a standard Top View Camera System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Seltos only offers a rear monitor.
Both the Q3 and the Seltos have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
The Audi Q3 weighs 588 to 957 pounds more than the Kia Seltos. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Q3 its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 86 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Seltos has not been tested, yet.
The Q3’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the Seltos’ (12/unlimited vs. 5/100,000).
The Audi Q3’s engine uses a cast iron block for durability, while the Seltos’ engines use an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Kia vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 2 more problems per 100 vehicles, Kia is ranked 10th.
The Q3’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 82 more horsepower (228 vs. 146) and 126 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 132) than the Seltos’ standard 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder. The Q3’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 53 more horsepower (228 vs. 175) and 63 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 195) than the Seltos S 1.6T/SX’s standard 1.6 turbo 4-cylinder.
The Q3 has 2.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the Seltos (15.9 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
For better stopping power the Q3’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Seltos:
The Q3’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Seltos are solid, not vented.
For better traction, the Q3 has larger standard tires than the Seltos (235/55R18 vs. 215/55R17). The Q3’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Seltos (255/40R20 vs. 235/45R18).
The Q3’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Seltos Turbo’s 45 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Q3 has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Seltos 2.0L. The Q3’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the Seltos Turbo.
For superior ride and handling, the Audi Q3 has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Seltos 4x2 has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.
The Q3 has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Seltos doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Q3’s wheelbase is 2 inches longer than on the Seltos (105.5 inches vs. 103.5 inches).
The Q3 has 1.2 inches more front shoulder room and .4 inches more rear shoulder room than the Seltos.
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Q3 has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Seltos doesn’t offer a power liftgate.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Kia. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 32% lower rating, Kia is ranked 20th.
The Q3’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Seltos has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
The Q3’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Seltos’ standard power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.
If the windows are left open on the Q3 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Seltos can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The Q3’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Seltos’ manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
The Q3’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Kia only offers heated mirrors on the Seltos S/EX/SX.
The Q3 Premium Plus/Prestige’s standard rear and side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Seltos offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
The Q3’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Seltos doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
The Q3 Prestige’s Park Steering Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Seltos doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
Consumer Reports® recommends the Audi Q3, based on reliability, safety and performance.
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