Q5 is the mid-sized model in Audi’s SUV range and its most popular. It made an immediate impact when it first went on sale in 2008. The current, second generation, model has been on sale since 2017 with an upgrade late last year.
There are five variants with petrol or diesel engines ranging in price from $65,900 for the entry level 40 TDI design model to $84,700 for the 50 TDI sport.
The Q5 carries the latest form of Audi’s successful design theme including the familiar and apparently ageless single-frame radiator grille. It has a taut sporty look with a low front and horizontal lines.
The grilles work neatly with the centre one having the hexagonal shape. A crease, which Audi calls a tornado line, wraps around the car.
The rear features horizontal lines that emphasise the width of the vehicle, while the interesting ‘clamshell’ tailgate wraps around to the side and gives the SUV a compact look. The rear lights are built into the tailgate and move up when the boot is opened. Lights in the bumper then take over from the obscured upper lights.
The apparent twin exhausts are actually blank panels with the real exhaust hidden beneath the car.
New exterior features for the MY2020 Q5 include two-tone 19-inch alloy wheels and a panoramic sunroof as standard in the 40 TDI and 45 TFSI. The 50 TDI gets the Audi S line exterior package.
The low and sleek side profile of the Q5 disguises the fact there’s good interior headroom both front and rear.
Styling is typically Audi meaning that it’s neat and functional without anything ostentatious and with all the dials and controls in the right place. The horizontal design includes a timber panel running the full width of the instrument panel.
The three-spoke steering wheels on all variants carry leather trim and multifunction buttons.
The air-conditioning system has three zones and has controls for rear passengers.
The boot has a standard volume of 550 litres. With the sliding rear seats in the 50 TDI it can be expanded to 610 litres. With the rear seats folded 1560 litres are available.
A partition net and luggage compartment cover are standard, as are four tie-down points.
Our test car came with the optional air suspension and there’s a button on the boot wall that allows the car to be lowered to assist with loading.
ENGINES / TRANSMISSIONS
Audi Q5 comes with the choice of three engines. The four-cylinder 2.0-litre TDI turbo-diesel and TFSI turbo-petrol produce 140 kW / 400 Nm and 185 kW / 370 Nm respectively. Both have a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
The third engine, added to the range in late 2018 is a 3.0-litre 210 kW / 620 Nm V6 diesel that comes with an eight-speed torque-convertor auto.
Claimed fuel consumption is listed at 5.8 L/100 km (40 TDI), 6.1 L/100 km (45 TFSI) and 7.6 L/100 km (50 TDI).
All three engines make Euro 6 emission standards. The advanced start / stop system can cut the engine at speeds below seven km/h while coasting to a stop.
Standard on the new Q5 is Audi drive select, which can tailor the vehicle ride and handling to the driver’s wishes. An adaptive air suspension is an option.
All Q5 models now come with quattro ultra which provides fast, all but imperceptible switching between front and all-wheel drive.
Driver assist systems include Audi pre-sense city, which monitors the road in front of the vehicle; attention assist, warning drivers of their losing concentration; adaptive cruise control, keeping the Q5 a given time from the vehicle ahead; turn assist; lane change assist; exit warning, which warns against opening doors when a vehicle or cyclist is approaching; and park assist which is an aid to everyday manoeuvres when parking.
Audi’s MMI controls are on the centre console and design and position vary according to the infotainment system installed. A large touchpad has a nearly rectangular operating screen 110mm x 80mm. The driver can enter characters or perform multi-finger gestures to zoom in on the map.
The driver can switch between two instrument configurations by pressing the ‘View’ button on the multifunction steering wheel. In Infotainment mode, a central window dominates the view, providing a lot of space for the navigation map or lists from the phone, radio and media areas.
Other functions can be controlled with the rotary push-button control which enables scrolling, clicking and moving or by voice commands.
There are two Bang & Olufsen sound systems with a 10- or 19-speaker 3D Sound System depending on the model. Access to Apple CarPlay or Android Auto is standard.
For MY2020 all models now include Audi smartphone charging. There are two USB ports for rear-seat passengers.
Our test vehicle was the range-topping 3.0-litre V6 turbo-diesel 50 TDI. Entry and exit is relatively easy and once inside the driver’s seat is firm, supportive and comfortable enough for long-distance cruising.
The engine is a real gem. It’s very smooth and works well with the eight-speed transmission. It is fairly noisy from the outside but that’s negated inside with insulation materials.
Acceleration is sharp. Steering is light, well-weighted and precise. Our car came with the optional air suspension which further enhanced the ride and handling quality.
There are a variety of drive modes including allroad, efficiency, comfort, dynamic and individual as well as the previously mentioned lift / offroad option for extra ground clearance with the optional air suspension.
During ordinary driving on bitumen the vehicle remained in two-wheel drive for more than 90 per cent of the time, switching to AWD only on spirited acceleration and hard braking and on tight bends at speed.
We averaged 8.5 litres per 100 km during our week-long test over our typical mixture of urban, motorway and rural which, with a kerb weight of just under two tonnes, compares pretty well against the official 7.6 L/100 km.
Audi’s latest Q5 is an outstanding premium SUV with more than a decade of strong sales behind it. The very competitive price for its market segment certainly helps its sales figures.
AT A GLANCE
Q5 40 TDI design 2.0-litre 140 kW diesel: $65,900
Q5 45 TFSI design 2.0-litre 185 kW petrol: $66,900
Q5 40 TDI sport 2.0-litre 140 kW diesel: $71,600
Q5 45 TFSI sport 2.0-litre 185 kW petrol: $73,500
Q5 50 TDI sport 3.0-litre V6 210 kW diesel: $84,700
Note: These prices do not include government or dealer delivery charges. Contact your local Audi dealer for drive-away prices.
SPECIFICATIONS (Audi Q5 50 TDI sport)
Capacity: 2.967 litres
Maximum Power: 210 kW @ 4000 rpm
Maximum Torque: 620 Nm @ 1500 rpm
Fuel type: Diesel
Combined Cycle (ADR 81/01): 7.6 litres per 100 km
CO2 emissions: 160 g/km
Drivetrain: Eight-speed automatic
DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT AND CAPACITIES:
Length: 4663 mm
Width: 1898 mm
Height: 1657 mm
Wheelbase: 2832 mm
Kerb weight: 1945 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 65 litres
Turning circle: Not supplied
Front: Ventilated disc
Rear: Solid disc
Three years / unlimited km