AFTER you’ve driven the Audi SQ5, nothing much by way of SUVs will quite hit the spot for practical excitement.
But that’s not taking anything away from the “more sedate” Q5, which has added to the rise of SUV sales for the German brand. SUV deliveries have more than doubled in the last five years. Now one in three cars that Audi rolls out is an SUV, and more than 3 million Qs have been sold.
The combination of practical space, comfortable driving, a higher driving position and a greater attention to drivability have helped the programme.
The new Q5 benefits from being longer and taller. It allows its previously more rounded aspects to be elongated and given fresh lines that give it a more contemporary look.
Fewer breaks in lines and a wraparound tailgate give it a less “bottom-heavy” feel. But you still get a lot of boot space when you open the tail door.
New production techniques ensure a stiffer frame that is also 35kg lighter than its predecessor. Coupled with a two-litre turbocharged engine, you enjoy smooth power that may not be wickedly quick, but gets you from home to office or upcountry with little effort.
For a big fella to do 0-100kmh in 6.3 second, it does get up and running with purpose. Handling is assured, and in dynamic there’s enough adrenaline to take it for a spirited run. For a relatively large car, it handles well, and with Quattro in play on all road surfaces, it delivers an accomplished performance.
Much of the Q5’s appeal lies in the cabin. Neither cramped nor oversized, this would be Goldilocks’ ideal wheels. The quilted leather seats add a dash of flash to the overall look, which is up there in the luxury category.
Subtle interior lighting and clean touches result in a less utilitarian feel that pushes up the Q5’s desirability factor.
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TECH SPECS AUDI Q5
Engine: Inline 4 cylinder, exhaust turbocharger
Max Power: [email protected],000–6,000rpm
Max Torque: [email protected],600–4,500rpm
Transmission: 7-speed dual clutch
Efficiency: 6.8-7.1L/100km (Combined, and depending on tyre size)
CO2: 154-162g/km (Combined, and depending on tyre size)
0-100kmh: 6.3 seconds
Top Speed: 237 kmh
Retail price: *$239,700
Please reconfirm price with dealer.
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