The Audi Q5 crossover was released in 2017, and in the summer of 2020 the automaker introduced a restyled model. We wrote about Q5 two years ago, but then the material was part of “Saturday Coffee”, so before launching the updated model, we decided to do a full test of the car, especially since the current version is still in full sale, and the new one, which does not have much changes, will come to Russia only in 2021.
The restyled crossover Audi Q5 in the exterior has received minor changes, from the visible it is a new pattern of headlights and taillights, which can now be OLED and with three pattern options to choose from. Of course, we also note the new green color, in which the crossover flaunts in the press photo and which was not available for the current car. There are also few changes in the cabin, the main one being a new 10.1-inch touchscreen media system with feedback, which replaces the 8.3-inch display in the current generation. Despite the fact that the screen in the restyled Q5 still sticks out in the center and is not built into the panel, as, for example, in the new Q3 or older models, its control logic is new, plus the washer and touchpad were removed from the central tunnel, which no longer have necessity. As for the rest, the changes are purely cosmetic, the manufacturer did not even install a second display for climate control in the update, as in Q8 and other novelties, but left the usual physical controls from the current version. The assembly of the restyled model should begin in September in Mexico, but the car will arrive in our market only next year, and it is likely that both generations of the car will be sold at the same time for some time.
Like the Volvo XC60 rival, the Audi Q5 doesn’t look very much like a crossover, but rather looks like a raised hatchback. This was done rather for the sake of the European market, where large cars are not very much in demand and a brutal crossover can rather scare away buyers. And so a neat cute crossover that does not look defiant and catchy, so it is quite suitable for the average European with a family. I miss some kind of aggression in the appearance of Q5, it looks too good-natured, although in character it is not so simple. For some reason, even the younger brother of the Q3 looks like an adult crossover with a bit of aggression in appearance, and the Q5 is so, neither one nor the other. Although I do not argue, for those who do not like to stand out, the Audi Q5 is an ideal option, it is absolutely not striking and is not particularly memorable. But visually, the car, in spite of everything, is a full-fledged representative of the Audi family, with a large branded radiator grille, a pattern of headlights and taillights characteristic of the company, you can never confuse it with cars of other brands.
In the interior of the Q5, you can feel that the car belongs to a premium brand, and visually everything is typical for Audi, however, of the last generation. By the way, the restyled model will be difficult on the market, taking into account minor changes in the cabin, it will not be associated with the new model. Audi Q3, Q7, Q8, which received a new architectural solution in the interior, differ too much from the Q5, including the restyled model, and the buyer who comes to the salon for this car will certainly look at other models and will be surprised that it is the Q5 that stands out for its “outdated” interior … If we compare the Q5 with the previous generation Q7 or Q3, then it is quite in trend, the same straight line of the front panel, a small display sticking out like something foreign above it, with a modern optional virtual instrument panel and a convenient low automatic transmission lever. By the way, in the restyled model, as well as other new products of the company, the manufacturer decided not to change the shape of the gearbox lever, which was made for the last generation of the media system and allowed putting your palm on it to reach the washer without problems, which was the main multimedia control body and which was removed in the new generation of the system. In our Q5, the puck is in place, like the touchpad in front of it, but they are necessary, since the screen is not touch-sensitive. What is really good in the current generation and what has not been touched in the new one, and did the right thing, is the climate control unit with comfortable handles that have a very pleasant and accurate move, and temperature data are displayed on the display built into them. I understand that progress and technology, but the good old physical climate control unit is much better than the same touchscreen display in older models, which is convenient to use only in the parking lot.
I have no complaints about the landing, as well as the review in Q5. The optional seats with an adjustable thigh cushion have pronounced lateral support and a correct profile, they are medium in terms of stiffness and do not get tired on long trips, although in terms of comfort they are still slightly inferior to those in the Volvo XC60. In our car, the seats were with a full package of electric adjustments and memory of positions for the driver’s seat, we also had massage available, but in only three variants of its operation and in comparison with that in Q8, it is clearly weaker. All adjustments of the seat and steering wheel are enough with a margin, so that the Q5 can comfortably accommodate a driver of any height and build.
With a height of 187 cm, I calmly sit down by myself, my knees do not rest on the back of the seat, there is legroom below, and the ceiling, despite the presence of a large panoramic roof, does not press. But then again, comparing the rear sofa of the Q5 and the Volvo XC60, the win is on the side of the Swedish brand, in Audi, although it is comfortable in the back, it is still not the same as in the competitor. The Isofix fittings are located under the end caps on the edges of the sofa, so installing the child seat is straightforward. Isofix mounts are optionally available on the front passenger seat, where they are located between the pillows, but protrude slightly, so installation can be done quickly. By the way, in Q5, the mounts are not removed deep into the cushions, so they have free access, while the passenger never complains about them, so why other manufacturers do not do the same, but try to hide the mounts as deep as possible, so you have to sweat a lot when installing the seat …
Despite the spacious rear row of seats, the Audi Q5 also has a pretty decent trunk with a volume of 550 liters, under the floor of which a dock is hidden. By folding the backs of the rear sofa separately, this can be done from the passenger compartment or directly from the trunk, the useful volume can be increased to an impressive 1550 liters. If there is air suspension, as in the test car, the rear of the car can be lowered from the luggage compartment or, conversely, raised for convenient loading or unloading of things. The luggage door can be electrically operated, with the possibility of completely locking the car after closing and opening by swinging the leg under the bumper.
The test car was equipped with an Audi Virtual Cockpit with a 12,3-inch display and a resolution of 1440 x 540, which is not worse than analog and is perfectly readable in any light, and also provides a lot of additional options for driver comfort. For example, you can display a map on it and see the route without being distracted by the main screen, you can manage calls or playlists, and also quickly set up active cruise control. Data management on the virtual dashboard falls on the buttons and rollers on the steering wheel, there is nothing difficult about this and you can quickly get used to navigating on the go.
The head unit we had was MMI Navigation Plus with an MMI all-in-touch touch panel. The system is equipped with a display diagonal of 8,3 inches with a resolution of 1024 x 480 pixels. Here, perhaps, I note that Audi has a kind of head unit control system: you put your right hand on the armrest, then your hand should rest on the gear lever (that’s why the lever in Audi is low and of this shape), and after that the control washer should be under your fingers, you can use it to control the device, just like in other cars. Behind the puck is the MMI all-in-touch touchpad, which recognizes gestures similar to smartphones and also provides handwriting input. You quickly get used to controlling the media system from the puck, although at first it seems difficult to master. But in Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, which the system supports, controlling only the puck is already inconvenient, since they are not optimized for this way of navigation, at these moments you already dream of a touch screen.
The built-in navigation system is able to work with traffic jams, builds good routes, and the maps are quite relevant for today. To connect to the Internet, the car has its own LTE modem, in addition, you can configure an access point and distribute data to other devices via WiFi. In addition to traffic data, the data transfer in the system allows you to watch news through Audi’s own news section, as well as the weather and, of course, search for parking lots and points of interest along the route. The speed of the system is quite acceptable, there are no obvious slowdowns in it.
The car has four USB-A connectors, two in the front and two in the rear. In front, one USB is in open access at the bottom of the front console, but the minus is that there is nowhere to put a modern smartphone. The second USB is located in the armrest, there is also an option, a platform with wireless charging is available, on the latter, for some reason, the devices get very hot, so after a couple of test charges I decided to switch to a wired connection. Modern gadgets do not charge too quickly from the on-board network, but the charge goes confidently even on devices under load. Connecting phones via Bluetooth to the system is quick, and the connection always remains stable. The advantage of the system is the ability to work with the call list from the virtual dashboard, which is much more convenient and safer than being distracted by the main display. The speakerphone works flawlessly, external microphones have good sensitivity and you don’t need to raise your voice during a conversation.
The test car was stuffed with driver assistants to the fullest, but not all of them are in the basic versions, some can be ordered separately, and some in packages. There is adaptive cruise control, which is able to maintain the distance to the vehicle in front, the traffic jam assistant, which works at speeds up to 60 km / h and the lane keeping assistant. “Autopilot” loses to that in the competitor Volvo XC60, acting too twitchy in traffic jams and sometimes missing cars that climb in front, but there are no complaints about it on the track. And it is also worth noting the Audi pre sense front system, which can prevent a frontal collision and which can partially or completely brake the car and works at speeds up to 250 km / h. This also includes an emergency maneuvering system, which intervenes in the driving process, helping the driver to avoid an obstacle. Separately, I would like to say about the Audi pre sense rear system, which scans the space behind the car and, in the event of a danger of an emergency, automatically closes the windows and sunroof and tightens the driver’s and passenger’s belts, such a collision preparation that can help save lives in the event of an accident.
Of course, the Audi Q5 has a blind spot monitoring system with large indicator lights on the mirror caps. There are parking sensors in a circle and a circular view camera, which greatly facilitates parking, although I would not call the picture quality from the cameras very good by modern standards. An optional automatic parking system is available, both parallel and with a check-in, but in my opinion, these assistants are still more for novice drivers, and they will not help in cramped conditions where an ordinary driver can poke around a little.
In terms of comfort, the car is not bad for its class; on the move, there is a little noise from the tires in the cabin, but not critical, and quite a bit of aerodynamic noise appears on the track, but it’s also not scary. The adaptive air suspension is an option, but I would not say that even in the Comfort mode, it is very soft with it, perhaps the big wheels were to blame and if you put smaller ones it will be more comfortable. The suspension works well for small irregularities, but large ones, the same speed bumps, can sometimes give good results in the cabin.
According to the configurator on the Russian Audi website, today the Q5 comes with two engines to choose from, a three-liter diesel and a two-liter petrol, both with 249 hp. and with a similar acceleration to 100 km / h, for the first 6 seconds are declared exactly, for the second 6.3 seconds. All versions come with the same legendary permanent all-wheel drive Quattro, while the restyled model will be available only with all-wheel drive Quattro Ultra, with which the car will be front-wheel drive by default, and the car’s electronics will connect the rear axle at its discretion, depending on the road conditions. Yes, diesel Q5s are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, while gasoline ones are equipped with a seven-speed robot.
We had a gasoline version on the test, in terms of dynamics it shows itself very well, although I think the diesel should be more fun. The robotic box behaves in most cases predictably, shifting gears without hesitation, but in traffic jams there are still some twitchings, albeit insignificant. The control of the car is precise and I would say sharp, so you can drive for the soul, especially if you select the sport mode in the settings, when the car crouches, the reactions on the gas pedal are aggravated, and the steering wheel becomes heavy. In general, it turns out such a universal crossover, in which the family can be taken slowly with comfort, and if the soul asks, then drive a little. In terms of consumption in the city, in a dynamic mode of movement, it always turns out in the region of 11-12 liters per 100 km, if you moderate the ardor a little, then it is quite possible to keep within 10,5. In mixed driving mode, about 9 liters are released, although the manufacturer claims 6.8 liters per 100 km for it, and 8.3 liters in the city.
The price of the Audi Q5 starts at 3 rubles, a fully stuffed version, as we have on the test, quietly flies away for 460 rubles. If you are satisfied with the calm appearance of the car and you do not need the freshest media system, and the control with the puck suits you completely, then the current Q000 can be taken. Restyling, of course, will come to our market relatively soon, but it will most likely be more expensive, plus it will have Quattro Ultra all-wheel drive, and the new media system in the old version may not be as convenient as the current solution.
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