2019 Audi Q3 Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Steering, engine, and powertrain issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Luxury vehicles continue to evolve and change with the times. The 2019 Audi Q3 is one model that was set to impress, with the automaker claiming, “Expectations were meant to be exceeded.” However, it seems that the Q3 suffers from the same defects it has for years, with no resolution in sight. This model has a defective steering system, malfunctioning engine and a faulty powertrain.

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NHTSA Complaints for the 2019 Audi Q3

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Electrical System
Fuel/propulsion System
Exterior Lighting
Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking
Forward Collision Avoidance: Warnings
Unknown Or Other
Power Train
Vehicle Speed Control

Click on other model year to view more problems: 2018    2020   2021   2022

Problems with the Steering

To keep any vehicle on the road, the steering system must be completely functional, but that’s not what is happening in the cockpit of the Q3.

Here is one NHTSA review worth reading. “The engine disengaged while I was inching into a left-hand turn through an intersection. When I attempted to then start my turn, the engine re-engaged, but I was unable to turn the steering wheel, causing me to drive forward (toward oncoming traffic) instead of being able to turn the wheel left to complete my turn. Similar events happened on several occasions.”

There are two major recalls that consumers need to know about with the Q3, one of which involves the steering system. NHTSA Campaign Number 21V027000 states that a production problem caused the belt pulley from allowing the circlip to engage, which could detach and cause the steering system to lock up. Of course, if this happens, occupants can count on the air bags. Except, they can’t in the Q3. NHTSA Campaign Number 20V273000 says that the passenger air bags might not deploy, leaving loved ones in danger during an accident. For a luxury vehicle that is supposed to exceed expectations, the Q3 is leaving a lot to be desired.

Problems with the Engine

The engine has also been the talk of the town, and not for good reasons.

Here’s one Edmunds complaint. “It has a very noisy engine that sounds horrible on cold startup.”

However, there are much larger concerns than just the noisy engine. In fact, a class action lawsuit is occurring as we speak. It turns out that the start-stop technology is putting people at risk and leading to accidents. While this situation should be a recall and should be fixed, Audi continues to send out Q3s on the road with problems. Nothing says lemon car more than a class action lawsuit against an automaker.

Problems with the Powertrain

In conjunction with the engine, the powertrain isn’t operating much better. Customers expect a smooth, enjoyable ride behind the wheel of the Audi Q3, but that’s not what they receive.

Just read one more Edmunds review. “The problem with this car is its transmission and overall poor driving experience. The upshifts are inconsistent and jerky. The down shifts are consistently jerky. Especially at low gears. On the highway, you can feel the upshifts through your whole body.”

Audi has remained relatively quiet about transmission problems but did issue Service Bulletin #A3920332043144_7, which discusses the trouble with the all-wheel-drive coupling. At this point, it’s hard to believe that Audi knows how to manufacture any basic car system since all of theirs do the opposite of exceed expectations.

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work out your lemon case at no cost to you. The law makes Audi pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.

Complaint Data

CategoryElectrical System, Engine, Exterior Lighting
DateFeb 11, 2023
After multiple attempts to have my 2019 audi q3 repaired the vehicle is still sitting at audi of columbia with the following issues (leaking water, drainage system is compromised, mold in the roof lining, sunroof is leaking).
CategoryFuel/propulsion System
DateNov 18, 2022
Vehicle stalls even while actively engaged in driving. Audi diagnosed performing as designed and advised nothing that they can do until diagnosed as “not performing as designed”. Poses imminent crash issue as vehicle will stall at any time. Please investigate. I am terrified to drive the car from place to place.
CategoryForward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Avoidance: Warnings
DateJul 15, 2022
While driving, audi pre sense warning illuminated on dash, then emergency braking occurred while seatbelt tightened. There were no other cars around (neither in front or on the side) I did not hit anything in the street. Safety put at risk from unnecessary braking. Thankfully no cars were behind me. This did startle me but I maintained proper control of the vehicle.
CategoryFuel/propulsion System
DateApr 22, 2022
Vehicle fuel pump fails intermittently even while actively engaged in driving. Engine stalled while driving putting me at risk for an accident. Issue was hard to diagnose because the fault would clear after an episode and reappear 300-400 miles after being driven again. Check engine light appears and then after allowing car to sit for a few hours, the car will start again. Sometimes the check engine light remains, other times it goes away on its own. Vehicle was inspected by audi little rock and was performing as designed but issued occurred again 4 days after pickup. Currently the high pressure fuel pump is being replaced to try and solve the problem but vehicle can be made available for inspection if this does not resolve the issue. Since it is intermittently failing, issue hasn't been duplicated during inspection. Incident has occurred approx 8 times since purchased in jan 2022.
CategoryUnknown Or Other
DateJan 05, 2021
With no warning car died on the freeway in the rain "drive system failure". Car towed to dealership.
CategoryElectrical System, Power Train, Vehicle Speed Control
DateNov 23, 2020
While on the road, on the first month of driving the car august/september 2019, the car slowed down to 2-5 mph with a note on the dash screen to call service. I crawled the car to the side of the road. Gas pedal and breaks not working, pulling the emergency park button to stop the car. Immediately brought to audi service in fairfield ct for diagnostic and found nothing. Early november 2020 this has happen yet again in the middle of a stop light but this time the whole engine/car died with the ignition for 2 minutes. With my hazard lights on, I continued to start the car several times until it starts. Unfortunately, I do not feel safe in my car and audi services are not helping/cannot find the issue. It now has happen multiple times. Will I be dead next time is what goes through my mind.
CategoryElectrical System
DateJun 24, 2020
On three occasions, touchscreen failed to turn on preventing reverse camera from activating. Screen stayed blank or was unresponsive for several minutes. Vehicle was both stationary and in motion -- switching in and out of reverse did not resolve issue. *tr
DateFeb 26, 2020
The car had automatically shut off several times. This past time (which is why I'm reporting it) I was driving to my office that is less than 1. 5 miles from house and I was going through a 4 way intersection and the car completed shut off, steering wheel locked , brake and accelerator pedals locked. It took several minutes for me to get the car started again. And I almost got hit from oncoming vehicles. It is a brand new car with 6,000 miles on it. I had it towed to audi dealership because I was not comfortable driving the vehicle. I was informed later that day by audi that it is a known issue with the car but they will not have the part to fix it for 2 months. They state audi said it's not a safety issue. If your car shuts off randomly and your on the highway or a busy intersection and almost get hit that's a safety issue. I was informed to turn the start stop feature off and the car will be fine to drive until the part is available. I informed audi I had that feature turned off when it occurred. That aside what if I got in the car and forgot to turn that feature off and it happened agains and this time I get hit and injured. Or one of my children drive the car and don't turn that feature off and it happens to them. You shouldn't spend that kind of money on a vehicle and have to worry about turning off features that are equipped in the car because the malfunction. All I asked for was a loaner until the part to fix a known issue that audi acknowledges was available. I'm not comfortable driving the vehicle and my families safety is at risk. The fact that audi hadn't made it a recall or says it's not a safety issue is unbelievable.
DateJan 27, 2020
Vehicle is equipped with an auto start/stop feature. When stopped at stoplights, intersections, etc, the vehicle engine will turn off. When driver's foot is removed from brake petal, the engine reactivates. However, on numerous occasions, the power steering did not reactivate until 1-2 seconds after the engine restarts. This left me with no control of vehicle steering (as I was unable to easily turn the steering wheel). This resulted in several problematic incidents where, for example, the engine disengaged while I was inching into a left-hand turn through an intersection. When I attempted to then start my turn, the engine re-engaged, but I was unable to turn the steering wheel, causing me to drive forward (toward oncoming traffic) instead of being able to turn the wheel left to complete my turn. Similar events have happened on several occasions.

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Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 20 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

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