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Audi Q5 Review: Audi Q5 Review

Audi Q5 Review

By Aditya Chatterjee; 3rd April, 2013
Introduction

Audi Q5 Review

There are three premium car makers which are very popular in India. The one in third position makes cars for luxury and comfort. Their cars don’t look as exciting but yes in offering comfortable cars, this company does pretty well. One in the second position makes cars for enthusiasts. Drivers around the world vouch for its performance and styling. This company makes aggressive looking cars. Both these companies are very strong at voicing about their goods.

Audi Q5

The company which ranks first and sells more than the other two is not verbal at all. Perhaps they believe in doing it and proving it instead of talking too much about it. We are talking of Auto Union Deutschland Ingolstadt also known as Audi. They officially entered India in 2004 but Indians already had an encounter with the brand when Mr.Ravi Shastri had won an Audi 100 in 1985.

When we got a call from Audi and were invited for a Q5 drive experience, I was excited. A day without staring at the computer screen and driving a 2 litre petrol SUV (Yes, a PETROL SUV) from bustling streets of Mumbai to the twisty Amby Valley, it sounded a deal for sure. The Audi Q5 claims to have a perfect balance between performance and comfort. True? Read ahead.

Exterior

The Audi Q5 comes up as a very subtle looking SUV. The overall design of it looks more coupe inspired than a typical SUV. The sloping roof lines, mild flares on the side with a longish bonnet make the Q5 look very suave in nature. The Q5 does not look like a typical in-your-face kind of a SUV but then it still has a bold look and looks contemporary.

Audi Q5

Having a family face, this one too has a single frame radiator grille which has been finished in gloss chrome. The vertical chrome struts look very neat. The three dimensionally finished bonnet flows very elegantly between the single frame grille to the front windshield making the design look very aerodynamic. The Xenon plus trapezoidal headlamps sweep back to the side.

The side profile is humble. The window lines have been done in chrome. The Audi Q5 measures 4629mm in length. That also translated to good interior space. This one gets a 10 spoke V shaped lightweight forged aluminum wheels and 235/60 R18 tyres. The combination of these two make the car look dynamic. The roof line drops very subtly and the lip of the roofline ends with a spoiler which makes it look sporty.

Audi Q5

The rear has wide spread tail lamps. The tail gate indeed gives it a distinct look and one can easily it’s an Audi you are following. The tail gate is indeed very practical and makes it very practical to load and unload. Hidden under the massive chunk of a rear bumper are the exhaust diffusers which have been done in brush Aluminum.

So, the new Q5 which recently got its dose of updates is a good looking SUV. It looks more like a big hatch and less of a SUV. The fact that the Q5 is selling in good numbers also assures that India has matured as a market in terms of taste and choice. So, the Q5 packs in cues from Big-Bro Q7 and still manages its own character. The daytime running LED lights of the Q5 are just an icing and looks simply awesome.

Interior

Something that I always look for in premium cars is simplicity. The interiors should not be uncomfortable; the buttons should not look like space craft controls. The Q5 has welcoming interiors and controls which are simple to operate.

Audi Q5

The instrumental panel is done very neatly in white and red fonts. The background is black and the circles are done in chrome rings. The needles dangling in red are a sight for sure and seeing them rev up is again an additional high. On the top of the instrumental panel lies a screen which displays the present track being played

The central console is ergonomically designed and is inclined towards the driver for ease of reach. The screen on the top of the central panel shows navigation, vehicle information along with other information. This MMI or the Multi Media Interface can be controlled via the rotrary/push button. The hard keys around this control display information about the navigation, car and also can be operated to control telephone by pairing it with Bluetooth.

Audi Q5

Seats are done in Milano leather. The pistachio beige colour of the seats is very soothing. The front seats can be electrically controlled. Only the driver seat offers a auto-memory option where one can set up to 2 positions. Once seated inside, the Q5 feels like a confident big car. The 4 spoke steering wheel feels great. Legroom is generous for the front row while it gets tight for the rear passengers. It’s a decently heighted car so the head room is sufficient.

The music system and the AC unit of the Q5 do a fantastic job. In a car priced as much as the Q5 good performance becomes an essential. The AC chills the cabin in no time and also when it’s on full blow, there is no drag felt while driving. The rear AC too does its job well.

Audi Q5

Both row door pockets give provision to snug in a litre of beverage container which is very helpful. There are twin cup holders for the front row passengers and for the rear passengers; the cup holder tray is a push n slide out arrangement situated inside the rear armrest. The rear boot can pack in a luggage space of 540 litres which is grand again. It can be seen from the images that we packed in the luggage space with all our equipment and luggage and even then there was decent space left after that. So, the Audi Q5 makes it on our premium yet practical SUV. It offers comfort, luxury and premium feel without getting too hyper in design but instead retaining its simplicity.

Audi Q5

 

Performance

It is something which is a universal fact that the diesel engines are for torque while the petrol units are purely for fun. Before getting hold of the chunky 4 spoke steering wheel, it was an intuition that this drive will be GOOOD and hell yea …how right I was

Audi Q5

So, the Mumbai traffic decided to play the spoil sport and offered us traffic which seemed was sufficient to snatch all the excitement but then the TFSI petrol unit had something else in mind. It all starts with a soft push of the electronic key and the Q5 is alive. It doesn’t offer the roars and screams of a typical SUV but then it’s more of a gentle traveler. Seems someone taught this SUV some very manners.

Audi Q5

Dodging city traffic, holes as big as lunar craters and furious rickshaws, we finally got ourselves on the Mumbai Pune expressway. It was a long stretch of road with bare minimum traffic. Argho Mukherji, who accompanied us for the drive saw the kiddish grin on my face. We looked like two kids who had nicked someone’s SUV and were too happy about it.

The Q5 is a superb SUV to drive around. It does not throw its dimensions on the street. While taking sharp turns, the tyres simply refuse to lose traction and grab the streets very tight with great confidence. This confidence comes from its QUATTRO technology wherein all wheels have power but then there is a flexible shift of drove force to avoid skidding of the car. This is done with wheel-selective torque distribution. 40% of the power goes to the front axle while 60% stays with the real axle.

Audi Q5

Also with the fact that the Q5 comes with a 5-link front axle and a trapezoidal link real axle, the dynamic suspension setup makes the Q5 react very quickly to any sudden maneuver. The Q5 is as smart as it looks. So when you decide to throw the Q5 on a challenging surface, a host of electronic features rescue you out and with great ease. The speed sensitive steering wheel is super active while cornering and thus the feedback offered by it is very precise. The brakes chew off the discs it seems as the vehicle comes to a standstill before you can say how much power and torque the new engine makes.

Audi Q5

It offers four driving modes to choose from namely the comfort, dynamic, efficiency and individual. Comfort mode is for highways with a relaxed feel, dynamic (my favourite mode) which is for the sporty feel; efficiency is for an improved fuel consumption and individual mode is a tailor made option where the user gets to set the different parameters.

The Audi Q5 comes in 3 different engine configurations but the we drove was a 2.0L (1984cc) 4 cylinder turbocharged petrol engine with Audi valve lift system. This engine produces 165kW power at a range of 4500 to 6200 rpm and 350Nm torque at 1400 to 4500 rpm. It comes with a 8-speed tiptronic transmission. The only small let down was an absence of paddle shifters. The shifters would have made the drive experience more fun as it is not expected for the driver to keep shuttling his hand from the steering wheel to the transmission stick specially when on the dynamic mode where athletic performance is the main requirement.

 Audi Q5

Tech specs
Technical Specifications
 Make Audi
 Model Q5
Variant 2.0TFSI QUATTRO
EX-Showroom price Mumbai 44,45,000
Engine name 2.0TFSI Quattro
Fuel Type Petrol Engine
Power train All wheel drive
Engine displacement (cc) 1984
Power in PS/RPM 224/6200
Torque in Nm/RPM 350/4500
Transmission 8-Speed Triptronic
Fuel Tank capacity 75L
Fuel consumption in Litres/100km
Mixed 10
City 9
Highway 12
Dimensions in mm
Length 4629
Width 1898
Height 1655
Wheel base 2807
Ground clearance 230mm
Turning circle Dia 11.6M
Tyre Rating 235/65 R17
Features
Features 2.0TFSI Quattro 2.0TDI Quattro 3.0 TDI Quattro
Central locking Yes Yes Yes
Electronic immobilizer Yes Yes Yes
Heat insulating glass Yes Yes Yes
Wind screen cleaning system Yes Yes Yes
Sun visors Yes Yes Yes
Sun blind Yes Yes Yes
Anti theft alarm Yes Yes Yes
High gloss package Yes Yes Yes
Roof edge spoiler Yes Yes Yes
Panoramic glass sunroof Yes Yes Yes
3-Zone automatic air conditioning Yes Yes Yes
Window controls Yes Yes Yes
Music system Yes Yes Yes
Preperation for rear seat entertainment Yes Yes Yes
Buetooth interface Yes Yes Yes
Cruise control Yes Yes Yes
Parking system plus Yes Yes Yes
ABS With EBD,ESC Yes Yes Yes
Drive select Yes Yes Yes
8 Airbags Yes Yes Yes
Navigation Yes Yes Yes
Leather upholstery Yes Yes Yes
Competition
Specifications
Audi
Q5
Volvo
XC60
Volvo
XC90
Variant 2.0TFSi Quattro D5 AWD 3.2 AWD
Engine name 2.0TFSi Quattro 5 Cyl twin turbo 6 Cyl
EX-Showroom price Mumbai 44,45,000 41,42,000 42,50,000
Fuel Type Petrol Engine Diesel engine Petrol engine
Power train All wheel drive All wheel drive All wheel drive
Engine displacement 1984 2400 3200
Power in PS/RPM 224/6200 215/4000 248/6200
Torque in Nm/RPM 350/4500 440/4600 420/4400
Transmission 8-Speed Triptronic 6 Speed Automatic 6-Speed Atomatic
Fuel Tank capacity 75L 70L 70L
Fuel consumption in Litres/100km
Mixed 11 12 12
City 10 10 10
Highway 14 14 14
Dimensions
Length 4629 4627 4807
Width 1898 1713 1784
Height 1655 2120 2112
Wheel base 2807 2774 2857
Ground clearance 230mm 230 218
Turning circle Dia 11.6M 12.1 12.1
Tyre Rating 235/65 R17 235/65 R17 235/65 R17
Features
Central locking Yes Yes Yes
Electronic immobilizer Yes Yes Yes
Heat insulating glass Yes Yes Yes
Wind screen cleaning system Yes Yes Yes
Sun visors Yes Yes Yes
Sun blind Yes Yes Yes
Anti theft alarm Yes Yes Yes
High gloss package Yes Yes Yes
Roof edge spoiler Yes Yes Yes
Panoramic glass sunroof Yes Yes Yes
3-Zone automatic air conditioning Yes Yes Yes
Window controls Yes Yes Yes
Music system Yes Yes Yes
Preperation for rear seat entertainment Yes Yes Yes
Buetooth interface Yes Yes Yes
Cruise control Yes Yes Yes
Parking system plus Yes Yes Yes
ABS With EBD,ESC Yes Yes Yes
Drive select Yes Yes Yes
8 Airbags Yes Yes Yes
Navigation Yes Yes Yes
Leather upholstery Yes Yes Yes
Conclusion

The Audi Q5 comes out as a very sensible choice among the competition. Personally, it is just the design which pinches me a little bit as they all look very similar but apart from that, the Q5 is a very strong contender in this segment. The same can be seen with the number of Q5s Audi manages to sell.

Audi Q5

The main reason behind Audi’s success in India is because of their flexible decisions behind getting models in India. Tapping the right segment at the right time is the key element Audi has thrived on. Their sedans sell in good numbers as it is but their SUV offerings are as dynamic. The Q3 which is an entry level Audi SUV comes with class leading features. The Q7 on the other end is a massive machine which commands respect. The Audi Q5 strikes a perfect balance between the two.