Details and pricing are finally announced on Audi’s first-ever S version of a Q model – the SQ5. Why should we be excited about this? Because it’s a freaking S version of a Q model!
We’ll start with what we obviously care about the most:
If you decide to go the economical route and get the Q5 Hybrid, your 245 hp 2.0-liter will bag you 0-60 in 6.8 seconds.
The SQ5 ups the ante and drops in a more potent 3.0-liter TFSI V6 producing 354 hp and 347 lb-ft of torque, motivating the crossover to hit 60 mph from a stop in only 5.1 seconds.
It’s mated to the same eight-speed transmission as the rest of the Q5s, and of course has the good ol’ quattro AWD system we’ve grown to love Audi for.
The Traction Control System is interesting on the SQ5, adjusting itself based on whether or not the roof rack is installed – if it is, it adjusts the system’s center of gravity to handle better, and when it’s roof-rack-free, the ESC changes to allow a sportier drive. Clever indeed.
The standard Q5 starts at $35,900, or you can get the Q5 Hybrid from $50,900.
The SQ5 sits above them all, and is going to start at $51,900 here in the States. Yup, it’s not cheap, but consider what you’re getting.
Don’t think they haven’t give it the same ‘S’ treatment they give the other S-lines.
The SQ5 gets 20-inch alloys as standard, with 21-inchers as an option you probably want to take.
Similar to all S models, they’ve sexied up the front and rear bumpers, and added the signature Platinum Grey grille and diffuser, as well as aluminum exhaust tips and mirrors. Audi’s Xenon Plus headlights with auto-leveling come standard on the SQ5.
A new aluminum and black wood inlays are available, but if I’m getting something sporty, I try to stay away from any sort of wood inlays; that’s for classing up luxury cars. Give me aluminum and carbon fiber.
You get to plant your ass on leather and Alcantara sport seats as standard, with the option of Nappa leather interior and comfort package. Again, leather and Alcantara is the go-to sports car combo, so I’ll stick to the standard on that one.
Basically, you get a sports interior as standard and if you want to class it up as a luxury ride, you can do that too.
What’s the Verdict?
Basically what Audi’s done is pretty smart.
Their main competitors – BMW and Mercedes, and even Porsche – have two levels of the same model that fit evenly around the SQ5’s specs and pricing.
Check it out:
X5 xDrive 35i – 300 hp – $47,500
<-------------------------------- The SQ5 goes right in the middle (354 hp - $51,900) X5 xDrive 50i - 400 hp - $64,200
ML350 – 302 hp – $47,270
<-------------------------------- The SQ5 goes right in the middle (354 hp - $51,900) ML550 - 402 hp - $58,800
Cayenne – 300 hp – $49,600
<-------------------------------- The SQ5 goes right in the middle (354 hp - $51,900) Cayenne S - 400 hp - $66,800 Of course there are many more details and things to consider than horsepower and price, but you get the idea. The SQ5 fits in a nice little hole in the segment, and is a nice choice for someone who needs a luxurious crossover while keeping a sporty drive. Well played, Audi. Check below for loads of images of the 2014 Audi SQ5:
The ever-expanding range of performance edition Audi models is becoming a tantalizing treat to the European car lovers all over the world. Making use of the ‘S’ and ‘RS’ branding at a heightened frequency to corner the growing high performance models from Mercedes-Benz AMG division as well as BMW’s M line, Audi has been showing exceptional ambition in flourishing the go-fast attitude vehicles wearing the four-ring emblem. Creating coupes, convertibles, sedans and Avant wagons to match performance-seeking tastes, Audi’s latest venture with the S model badge is a departure from the current menu of vehicles.
Popularizing diesel as a performance engine ever since their R10 prototype sports car won the 2006 24 Hours of Le Mans, Audi has been tempted to for a while to bring the technology to the street. Several years ago, much speculation surrounded a TDI version of the Audi R8 supercar but it never materialized. The first S model vehicle to feature one of Audi’s crossover vehicles has the basis for performance enhancements, the SQ5 will be most noteworthy as the premiere of TDI engine technology for this sport application. The Audi SQ5 will be powered by what will be the highest output TDI powerplant to be featured in the car brand‘s street-legal vehicle collection. Generating a forceful 313 horsepower, the Audi SQ5’s six-cylinder 3.0 TDI engine incorporates many touches for optimized diesel performance such as twin turbochargers. Compared to the Porsche Cayenne Diesel built by Audi’s VW Group sister brand, the SQ5 is 63 horsepower more powerful also pushed by 73 additional feet-pounds of torque.
The Audi SQ5’s hood, the 3.0 TDI performance diesel is joined to an 8-speed tiptronic gearbox. Channelled through Audi’s quattro permanent all-wheel drive technology, the SQ5’s true nature comes with impressive acceleration. Launching from 0 to 62 miles per hour in just 5.1 seconds, the diesel-powered Audi SQ5 is a formidable performer against even some performance V-8 crossover vehicles. A top speed of 155 miles per hour is obtainable with the Audi SQ5 crossover. Spinning 245/45 tires, 20-inch and optional 21-inch wheels circulate tied to a sport-tuned suspension system. With the Audi SQ5 quattro providing torque vectoring, the crossover vehicle is additionally controlled through an extra cost Audi select drive system that offers dynamic steering.
With the 313-horsepower 3.0 TDI powerplant mated to quattro drive provides the necessary physical prowess of an Audi S model vehicle, the next area of improvement to the Q5 is making the crossover look aggressive enough to earn a sport moniker. The trademark front Audi grille on the SQ5 is treated with a platinum gray to create the appearance of aluminum. The side mirror covered with aluminum-like detail complements a high gloss package around the windows on the Audi SQ5 crossover giving the vehicle a unique glimmer. Modified bumper covers and a rear spoiler completes the accentuation of the Audi SQ5 to its friskier character.
Playing along the similar styling theme of the exterior, the Audi SQ5 cabin receives attention. Interior paneling of the Audi SQ5 provides the owner with a choice of Carbon Atlas, Piano finish and the new Aluminum/Beaufort wood black trim pieces. Brushed aluminum inlays and the S badge advertising completes an ultra-modern interior appearance. Power adjustable sport seats within a two-tone, leather-upholstered cabin insures comfort for the Audi SQ5’s passenger behind the high-performance diesel engine.
The Audi SQ5 TDI crossover vehicle will be made available in European dealerships by early 2013. There has not been an announcement if the sale of the Audi SQ5 will extend into North America.
Information and photo source: Audi AG