BEHIND THE WHEEL: Audi Q5 45 TFSI
MONDAY DECEMBER 6, 2021
An SQ5 has already been reviewed so this wasn’t planned for, really. Having driven 400 kilometres, surely there must be words and to my amazement, the 45 TFSI is a more compelling car than many sporty SUVs. This is a facelifted FY Q5 hence its got the new infotainment system which unlike before has touchscreen functionality. It is a meagre example with none of the boxes ticked and surprisingly, you can actually live with one because virtual cockpit, keyless entry including a whole load of other essentials come as standard. So the only thing to consider is whether or not to spend 7 thousand more for the Sport trim?
Quality taken a step back
0-100 km/h: 6.3 s
Remember a time where a Golf GTI’s 6.9 seconds sprint to a hundred was plenty quick? A regular family SUV today beats that fast car so power is more than adequate for a place with strict speed limits. The Q5 45 TFSI is not intended to be a performance car nevertheless its turbo blow offs are very audible inside as well as out which is good fun.
Moving onto its transmission, it is quick to up and downshift when already in speed but hesitates slightly when stationary. Other than that, it is an easy car to pilot about in the suburbs, furthermore fairly frugal as I averaged about 9 litres every 100 kilometres.
CarPlay is a very much welcomed piece of technology to somewhat future proof a car’s infotainment system. It is now wireless which makes things even more convenient so long as only one device is connected to the car. That together with slight interruptions aside, it is mobile integration done right. I like my hifi but these base 8 speakers sound perfectly alright and if Bang & Olufsen audio is a must, it will cost 2 thousand on top of 7 for the Sport trim.
These 19 inch rims look ugly however these thick-walled grade W rubbers that come together give comfort and traction. Having flogged the car hard during summer, I only managed to get some tyre squeal from a pedal to the metal junction exit. Attention has certainly been put into noise, vibration and harshness hence doing long distances in one of these will not be an issue given outside and road noise has been kept to a minimum. These front seats certainly help in journeys as they are adequately plush and supportive.
This Q5 handles pretty well in the bends despite riding on passive springs. Pitch isn’t obvious under hard acceleration while roll is well controlled. This thing actually feels lighter on its feet than an SQ5, the only reasons you’d spend more is for slightly more speed and sound.
There’s nothing to dislike in this package because it is such an all-rounder that does everything well aside from a couple of screws that needs tightening. The car only had 2000 ish kilometres on its odometer yet the 10-inch display has started to rattle. That aside, its right windscreen wiper catches the edge of the windscreen which makes a noise when in use. These may be minor annoyances nonetheless these demonstrate that Audi has relaxed on their benchmark on quality.
Personally, I’d stick with the base car and to only opt for the Assistance Package because everything else in the options list is more of a want than a need. That package will bring about adaptive cruise control, all-round cameras, folding mirrors along with heated front seats. Instead of putting lots of garnish on utilitarian cars of such, use them to take you places like they are intended to.
Audi Q5 45 TFSI Sport:
The 7 thousand dollar Sport trim comes with an assistant package (adaptive cruise control, all-round cameras, automatic parking and folding side mirrors) memory and heated seats, two more speakers and a sunroof. It also comes with these better looking, larger rims that sacrifices ride quality and brings about more road noise. This example also has a A$450 blacked out accent which makes it look more contrasty that is down to personal preference.
The Sport trim does offer good value for the bundled equipment when compared to buying them separately but bigger rims is something to think about given comfort is an important criteria when it comes to buying a car of such. Furthermore, if you would like to make the Q5 a very nice place to be, the Technik Package and adaptive air suspension are things to be considered.