The much-loved Audi Q5 has taken a discreet trip to the cosmetic surgeon, though the changes are much more than just aesthetic. Motoring journalist Sam Massey takes a closer look.
Since its launch in 2008, the Audi Q5 really has led the way for mid-size luxury crossovers. Taking all the same elegance found in the larger Q7 and packaging it into a size more suited to the average garage has proved massively popular, as the model is now one of the best sellers in its sector.
A fresh new look was introduced for the second generation a couple of years ago, but now Audi have once again gone back to the drawing board and tinkered with the design from the ground up. So then, what can we expect from the updated Q5?
Beginning with the exterior, at first glance you’d be forgiven for thinking that they’d left the outside alone. Look twice though and you will start to notice the whole car looks altogether more modern as the whole design seems tighter – much sleeker and more commanding than before. This is down mostly to the car’s party piece.
Audi are now paving the way when it comes to exterior lighting. Xenon headlights are nothing new and there’s nothing wrong with them, however Audi clearly don’t feel the same.
Up front they have replaced the old xenon daytime running lights with their all new Matrix LEDs across the range.
Move to the back and we see a first for the motor industry – OLED taillights. The grille has also been placed on a diet, now slimmer and more suited to the serious expression the Audi range now possesses.
A tweaked front bumper with slightly larger air intakes rounds off the changes to the exterior but Audi didn’t spend the majority of their time modifying the Q5’s styling. You must take a look inside to see the fruits of their labours.
Audi are producing some of the finest interiors fitted to modern cars at present and this new Q5 is no exception. The same gorgeous leather and array of perfectly crafted buttons and switches greet you upon entry. Though the dashboard remains a familiar place for existing owners, the biggest change in the cabin is the updated infotainment screen.
You can leave your reading glasses at home, as the new car has replaced the 8.3-inch screen for a much larger 10.1-inch unit. As standard, buyers can also expect heated front seats, 360-degree parking sensors and cruise control.
Meanwhile, the range topping Vorsprung model will feature Audi’s digital instrument cluster in place of a traditional analogue unit, with further options now including a 360-degree camera and self-parking.
Engines will remain largely the same, albeit with a few added refinements. The entry level 40 TDI still houses a 2.0 litre 4-cylinder diesel, but it now produces 201bhp, shortening the 0-60 sprint to a more respectable 7.6 seconds. The 45 TFSI remains identical in performance to the pre-facelift car whilst the SQ5 will once again sport a V6 Diesel. Greener options include two mild hybrids, both consisting of a 2.0 litre petrol engine mated to an electric motor. These will produce either 300hp or 370hp depending on the spec.
Prices begin at £43,000 but expect to be pushing £60,000 for a top of the range Vorsprung model with the must have 21-inch diamond cut alloys.