Audi’s mid-size SUV returns after an 18-month sabbatical with out its wonderful TDI diesel engine. Ought to it nonetheless be in your shortlist?
This up to date Q5 feels prefer it’s been a very long time coming. Sure, Audi discontinued nearly all of its product line-up in April 2020 with the arrival of BS6, and it’s slowly grown the vary again to the purpose that it now has 9 fashions on sale. Nevertheless, most of those are nonetheless area of interest or low-volume fashions working within the higher echelons of the luxurious automotive market, with solely the A4 and A6 (and the imported, limited-run Q2) propping up the ‘bread and butter’ segments. However now that the Q5 is again, having been delayed additional nonetheless by the pandemic, issues lastly really feel like they’re nearer to the place they have been two years in the past; SUVs, in any case, used to account for 45 p.c of Audi India’s gross sales.
2021 Audi Q5 facelift exterior, inside and options
Let’s get this out of the way in which proper in the beginning – each on the floor and beneath, the updates to the Q5 are few and refined. Exterior you’ll discover new designs for the LED headlamps and tail-lamps, a wider, flatter, now-octagonal grille with aggressive brushed steel vertical slats, a metallic strip between the tail-lamps, new bumpers, a little bit of silver trim beneath the doorways, and that’s it. They’ve additionally upped the wheel dimension from 18 to 19 inches, consistent with the phase pattern, however the design is a bit too plain. General then, the change isn’t dramatic, and this stays a pointy, tidy, albeit safely styled SUV.
LED headlamps get new DRL design.
Inside, the modifications are even fewer, with the one seen one being the transfer from an 8.3-inch infotainment display to a 10.1-inch unit. The larger information right here, like within the A4, S5 and RS5 that additionally bought facelifts this yr, is the transfer to a touchscreen interface, and Audi’s new era of MMI software program. It’s a cleaner UI that’s far smoother than earlier than, and in contrast to the dearer Audis, you continue to get bodily controls for the AC, which is welcome. The Digital Cockpit digital dials are additionally up to date, with higher-resolution imagery and slicker animation.
10.1-inch touchscreen the most important replace to the cabin.
It additionally stays a really sensible luxurious SUV, with a spacious again seat and a big, 550-litre boot. Simply want they added some USB ports for rear passengers; all you get is a 12v socket. The cabin now makes use of piano black somewhat than standard brown wooden trim, and the options record will get the notable addition of a 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system on the highest Know-how trim. It at all times was fairly nicely geared up although, and returning this time are wi-fi telephone charging, a panoramic sunroof, Apple Carplay and Android Auto, park help, adaptive dampers and eight airbags.
Again seat presents loads of head and knee room.
2021 Audi Q5 facelift engine, gearbox and driving impressions
Extremely refined and clean, the now-discontinued 2.Zero and three.Zero TDI diesel engines have been synonymous with Audi, and their absence is felt notably in an SUV just like the Q5. Fortunately, the returning 45 TFSI petrol engine is fairly spectacular too. The two.0-litre unit produces 249hp (3hp down after the transfer to BS6) and 370Nm, each numbers which are par for the phase, and as earlier than, it’s all channelled by way of a seven-speed dual-clutch auto gearbox and Quattro AWD.
Q5 now rides on bigger 19-inch wheels.
It is a clean and refined expertise, as earlier than, with a superb quantity of punch when it is advisable to get a transfer on. It’s not as thrilling as some rivals’ petrol engines, however at the very least the gearbox is fast to kick down, or reply to tugs on the paddles whenever you’re in a rush. And, in contrast to numerous different dual-clutch ’packing containers, in common auto mode, it doesn’t really feel too clunky whenever you’re plodding round at low speeds.
2.0-litre turbo-petrol packs good quantity of punch.
There are, as soon as once more, Drive Choose drive modes, together with Off Street, which units you in decrease gears and auto-engages hill-descent management. With greater than sufficient floor clearance, we have been in a position to have a fast play with this setting on a damaged path up and down a hill, and it carried out admirably. Doubtless extra essential to homeowners, nevertheless, is that throughout the varied ‘on street’ modes, the firmness of the dampers can be altered. This works nicely so as to add a bit extra management to physique actions in corners, in Dynamic mode, however as earlier than, sharp dealing with and aggressive driving shouldn’t be the Q5’s factor. The steering continues to be a bit too un-engaging for this to be an outright enjoyable automotive. Extremely, the journey high quality, regardless of the transfer to bigger wheels and decrease profile tyres, stays wonderful at any pace, and a spotlight of the Q5. It’s good and comfortable at decrease speeds, and even left in Consolation mode, endows the SUV with loads of composure as you go sooner.
2021 Audi Q5 facelift worth and verdict
As soon as the luxurious market chief, Audi India’s shrunken mannequin vary during the last 18 months and the lack of diesel have put it at a definite drawback in opposition to its two fundamental rivals, BMW and Mercedes-Benz. The Q5, nevertheless, heralds a turnaround for the model, one which can be bolstered by the return of the Q7 later this yr, and much more mainstream fashions in 2022.
Revised bumper and new tail-lamps are refined modifications on the rear.
Sure, issues haven’t modified a lot with this replace to the Q5, however did they really want to? Our opinions of the older automotive praised it for being a jack of all trades (and a grasp of some), and that appears to be the case as soon as once more. What we don’t have but is the value, however Audi is aware of it merely has to get this one proper. Each the A4 and A6 – the one different CKDs within the vary – are priced very aggressively of their segments, and we count on an identical story for the Q5, at round Rs 58 lakh-62 lakh (ex-showroom) for the 2 variants, Premium Plus and Know-how. If that’s sufficient to place it again on the driveways of the Indian luxurious SUV purchaser, we’ll have to attend and see.