The Audi Q5 was released right before the Q3 and followed after the Q7. Its entry into the market proves that Ingolstadt is out to prove that it can target all SUV markets. This model is also the vehicle’s competitor against the BMW XX3, Volvo XC60, and Land Rover Freelander. The Q5 is not an off-roader but is more of a mid-sized estate, but still delivers off road features such as an elevated position for the driver and the ability to go along snow, sand, and slippery road conditions. Read on to find out how it performs on regular road conditions, along off-road surfaces, and how its design stands against class leaders in its range.
In terms of aesthetic, the Q5 draws from the Volkswagen Touareg and the Porsche Cayenne. What sets the Q5 apart is its 210 mm taller height and wider frame compared to the Audi’s A4. Dimensions are similar in terms of dimensions and the model also has an identical wheelbase. In terms of weight, the Q5 is heavier by 135kg than the A4 quattro. The size totals at a 1730kg according to advertisements but is in reality at 1880 kg.
The Q5 cabin employs elements familiar to Audi enthusiasts and owners. This gives the model an advantage as the company is known for its ergonomics. Clean designs are seen on the entertainment controls, air-con, and dials. Quality materials are also used on most portions of the cabin. The MMI control system is easy to use and the graphics a big improvement from the third generation. The system also offers satellite navigation.
Legroom and headroom is generous for passengers, allowing four adults to seat comfortably at the back. Rear seats are also comfortable enough on long journeys thanks to their 60/40 split and slide and recline ability. The boot space is the largest among its class at 405 litres. The space also includes power sockets, fastenings, and a variation of hooks that come as additions to the rail-mounted load securing system.
The Q5 employs longitudinally-mounted engines that are familiar in terms of design, but still feature fresh speeds and additions. The 2.0 TDI from the VW group has a higher output at 168bhp and 258lb ft; the lower powered version is at 141bhp. The 2.0 petrol TFSI boasts of 208bhp but also comes at a 176bhp version. The manual or seven-speed S-tronic is placed at a front differential ahead of the gearbox, which helps in improving ride comfort by letting the front axle move forward.
Only the Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive enables the Q5 to be a worthy ride off the road. The Q5 excels the most along a cross country strop despite its 1.8-tonne mass and high driving position. And although this would work for a saloon model, this feature does not work as well given the Q5’s abilities in more regular habitats such as on town roads where speeds must be below 20 mph. The wheel needs more force as you accelerate into a roundabout as the car is unable to smoothly respond to the shift.
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