AUDI PREVIEWS ITS ALL-NEW Q2 COMPACT SUV

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A couple of months ago we were able to attend the global launch of Audi’s all-new Q2 compact SUV in Switzerland. Although its Australian release is still around five months away Audi has brought out a display model. We in the local motoring media have just viewed it and members of the eastern states public will be able to see Q2 at a travelling Pop-Up Roadshow over the next month.

Audi is keen to attract younger buyers to its brand and the booming compact SUV segment is a logical target with the Q2. The styling is more angular than its larger siblings in the Q range with a chiselled look and rearward sloping roofline.

However the feature that’s most likely to appeal to its youthful target buyer is an amazing choice of customisation options including 12 body colours; matching or contrasting door mirrors, grille, bumpers and grille surround colours.

There’s even the option of different finishes and colours for the extended C-pillar design that Audi stylists have called the ‘C-Blade’ in tribute to the large side Blades on the Audi R8 supercar. The Q2’s C-Blades are even interchangeable and so can easily be switched.

The front is dominated by a large polygonal single-frame grille flanked by narrow headlights with linear daytime running lights.

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The customisation theme continues inside the Audi Q2 with a choice of seat styles and materials including cloth, leather or Alcantara as well as different trim designs and stitching colours. There is a two-colour instrument panel with the lower zone colour-coordinated with the seat upholstery.

Internationally the Q2 is offered with several different petrol and diesel engines, all of them turbocharged and with either front- or all-wheel drive. Three of these will be imported to Australia. At release will be a 1.4-litre petrol FWD and a 2.0-litre AWD diesel, with a 2.0-litre AWD petrol to follow at a later date.

The 1.4-litre petrol uses cylinder-on-demand technology to shut down two of the four cylinders at low speeds. It develops 110 kW of power and 250 Nm of torque. Official fuel consumption is 5.2 litres per 100 kilometres. The 2.0-litre diesel has the same power peak (110 kW) as the petrol but with 230 Nm of torque. The 2.0-litre petrol is the most powerful of the three with 140 kW as well as 320 Nm.

All Australia imports will have a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic (S tronic in Audi speak). The auto on the 2.0 quattro models is a new design with faster shifts and smoother takeup during ultra-slow parking manoeuvres; whereas the 1.4 gets an older version of the S tronic.

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Boot capacity is 405 litres expandable to 1050 litres with the rear seatbacks folded. The boot door is power-operated, operated from the key fob and also can be closed with a button on the bottom of the door.

Many safety features have been carried over from the larger Q models including Audi Pre Sense Plus (AEB) system that recognises and reacts to a potential collision; adaptive cruise control; lane departure warning; cross traffic assist; and head-up display.

Infotainment is centred around the well-established Multi Media Interface (MMI) with a 7.0-inch tablet-type fixed screen sitting above the centre of the dash area that’s operated by a rotary/push button on the centre console or by voice.

The only price that has been announced is for the entry-level 1.4-litre FWD Q2 at $41,100 (plus on-road costs) while the 2.0-litre AWD diesel will be “sub $50,000”.

New Q2 has yet to undergo either Euro NCAP or local ANCAP tests, but the maximum five-star rating is all but guaranteed.

The dates and venues of the Audi Q2 Pop-Up Roadshow are:
September 28 to October 4 at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney
October 12 to 16 at the James Street Resort, Brisbane
October 17 to 20 at Pacific Fair, Gold Coast
October 27 to 30 at Melbourne Emporium, Melbourne

The all-new Audi Q2 will go on sale in February 2017. We’ll be attending the launch and will provide further information and initial drive impressions at this time, then provide a more detailed assessment when we follow-up with our usual extended test.

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