2018 Audi Q2 Review

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2018 Audi Q2 Review

Priced From $41,800Information

Overall Rating

0

4 out of 5 stars

Rating breakdown
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Safety, value & features

3 out of 5 stars

Comfort & space

4 out of 5 stars

Engine & gearbox

4 out of 5 stars

Ride & handling

4 out of 5 stars

Technology

4 out of 5 stars

Pros & Cons

  1. ProFresh styling, packaging, efficiency, fit and finish

  2. ConAlmost Q3 money but less practical, road noise, small boot

  3. The Pick: 2017 Audi Q2 2.0 TFSI Quattro Sport 4D Wagon

What stands out?

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Audi’s first small luxury SUV has youthful looks and broad appeal. It comes with a choice between two petrol engines and a diesel, and the same high level of fit and finish that the brand’s core models have become known for.

What might bug me?

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That many cheaper Korean and Japanese small SUVs have standard features – such as adaptive cruise control, push button start, hill hold assist and digital radio – that are only included in the Q2 as part of costly option packages on some models.

What body styles are there?

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Five-door, five-seat SUV-style hatchback only.

The Audi Q2 is available in either front- or all-wheel-drive. Which one you get depends on the engine you choose.

It is classed as a small SUV, higher priced.

What features do all Audi Q2s have?

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Six airbags and automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection are key safety features found in all Q2s, as is electronic stability control, which is mandatory on new cars and can help control a skid or a slide. (For the placement of airbags, and more on Q2 safety features, please open the Safety section below.)

An eight-speaker sound system with AM/FM radio and Bluetooth connectivity for mobile devices, all controllable from a 7.0-inch colour screen that can also mirror your smartphone via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

Satellite navigation with voice control – tell it where you want to go, and it will plot a route for you.

A reversing camera and front and rear parking sensors.

Dual-zone air-conditioning that allows the driver and front passenger to control their own temperature settings.

Long-lasting LED headlights and taillights, and distinctively styled LED daytime running lights. The headlights can turn on automatically when it’s dark. All Q2s also have windscreen wipers that operate automatically when it starts raining.

Other standard features include cruise control, powered door mirrors, alloy wheels, leather-appointed seats and leather multi-function steering wheel with paddle shifters to manually control gear shifting.

Which engine uses least fuel, and why wouldn't I choose it?

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The 1.4 TFSI’s 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol and the 2.0 TDI’s 2.0-litre turbo diesel are similarly economical, drinking 5.3L/100km and 5.2L/100km respectively, according to official combined figures that take into account highway and city driving.

A problem with the slightly more efficient diesel is its heavy cast-iron block, which hangs over the front wheels and can bring on understeer during hard cornering than the lighter 1.4 TFSI Q2.

The 1.4 TFSI is the zippier of the two engines, but only comes in front-wheel-drive format with a basic torsion beam rear suspension setup, and is not available with the quattro all-wheel-drive system and multi-link suspension included with the diesel, which gives it better traction.

The Q2 2.0 TFSI brings the best of both worlds, with a more-powerful 2.0-litre petrol turbo engine with the quattro all-wheel-drive running gear. Its lighter engine weight compared to the diesel makes it more nimble when driven spiritedly through bends, and its fuel economy is still relatively efficient at 6.5L/100km.

All three engines are coupled with a seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission.

What key features do I get if I spend more?

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As well as more powerful engines, quattro AWD and multilink suspension, the Q2 2.0 TFSI and 2.0 TDI have a few extra features over the 1.4TFSI model, including blind spot detection, which alerts you to any cars to the side of the vehicle when looking to change lanes.

The two 2.0 models also have body-coloured bumpers, which are a $500 option for the 1.4 TFSI, an electrically powered tailgate, and 18-inch alloy wheels that look sportier than the standard 17-inch set on the cheaper 1.4.

Additional interior features available in the 2.0 Q2s include sports front seats and aluminium-look interior elements such as switches and air vents.

You can add a host of extras to all three Q2 models by adding option packages, at extra cost, or selecting individual option items.

Option packs include the Comfort package ($1900), which adds keyless start/entry, heated front seats, electric lumbar support for the front seats and heated door mirrors. It also includes a storage package with netted pockets for the backs of the front seats, a 12V power socket for rear of the centre console, luggage compartment net to keep bags secure, glovebox lock and a second light in the boot space

The Assistance package brings additional advanced driver assistance technology such as adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, blind spot alert (1.4 TFSI only), high-beam assist (which automatically switches between high and low beam headlights when oncoming traffic is detected), hill hold assist, automatic park assist and a rollover sensor. This costs around $1600 for the 1.4 TFSI and $990 for the 2.0 TFSI and 2.0 TDI, which already have blind spot alert as standard.

Spend $2500 on the Technik package and you get Audi’s excellent Virtual Cockpit digital dashboard display, which replaces the traditional gauges with a 12.3-inch screen. You also get enhanced satellite navigation, and a sporty, flat-bottom, leather trimmed multi-function sports steering wheel with paddle shifters.

Other option packages add more sports credibility to the Q2, such as the S Line package, that’s only available for purchase with the 2.0 TDI and 2.0 TFSI models, for about $1500. It brings 18-inch alloy wheels with ‘5-Y’ spoke design, sports suspension, ‘S’ embossed sports seats trimmed with leather and Alcantara suede, multi-function sports steering wheel with S logo, perforated leather gear knob, black headlining, stainless steel foot pedals and aluminium door sills.

Individual options include 19-inch alloy wheels, adaptive suspension dampers [LINK?] to switch between soft and firm for comfort and improved handling, a Bang & Olufsen 10-speaker sound

Does any upgrade have a down side?

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The optional 19-inch wheels produce more tyre noise and you’ll feel more bumps on their sporty, lower profile tyres compared to the 1.4-TFSI’s 17-inch wheels, and to a lesser extend the 18s under the 2.0 TFSI and 2.0 TDI.

There are only two standard colours, Brilliant Black or Ibis White, with other colours costing up to about $1700 extra.

How comfortable is the Audi Q2?

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As you’d expect from Audi, the cabin is well presented and uncluttered, with major controls in logical positions. The circular air vents exemplify the functional elegance.

Surfaces and textures are of high quality, and reinforce Audi’s luxury positioning albeit with a more youthful look. The steering wheel adjusts for height and reach.

The Q2’s standard eight-speaker audio system sounds crisp and punchy. An optional 10-speaker system adds a subwoofer for more bass, delivering a richer, fuller sound.

With the music off, the cabin of a Q2 is susceptible to tyre noise, particularly on coarse surfaces at highway speeds. However, wind noise is mild compared to other small SUVs.

The Q2 rides in a comfortable but well controlled manner, absorbing bumps succinctly. Its suspension is particularly good above 80km/h, recovering quickly and keeping the body in check.

What about safety in a Q2?

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Mandatory stability control, six airbags, bright LED auto-on headlights, LED daytime running lights, auto windscreen wipers, and seatbelt warnings for all five passengers give the Q2 solid safety credentials. In addition, all Q2s come with auto emergency braking that helps you avoid city-speed rear-end impacts with other vehicles and pedestrians.

There are two airbags directly in front of the driver and front passenger; an airbag alongside each front occupant to protect the upper body; and a curtain airbag down each side of the car at head level, protecting front and rear occupants from side impacts.

The standard Audi Pre-sense City collision detection system warns you of imminent frontal crashes and is calibrated to recognise pedestrians. If you ignore the warning, it can apply the brakes automatically at speeds up to 65km/h, with the aim of avoiding the crash or mitigating your impact speed.

The Q2 2.0 TFSI quattro Sport and 2.0 TDI quattro Sport add Side assist, which uses rear-facing sensors to scan your rear corners, warning you of adjacent or fast-overtaking cars that might not appear in your mirrors.

On any Q2 you can add crash-avoidance aids with the optional Assistance Package. As well as adaptive cruise control and auto high-beam, this brings you Active lane assist which helps you avoid drifting dangerously into another lane by applying gentle steering pressure to wake you up and bring the car back within the lines. The pack also adds Side assist to the Q2 1.4 TFSI, which doesn’t have it as standard.

The Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) awarded the Audi Q2 its maximum five stars for safety, in February 2017.

I like driving - will I enjoy the Q2?

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Yes, all three models have sharp handling and a vibrant ride in common, though the two petrol engines offer the best balance of performance and road-holding. They have excellent ride and handling capabilities and ride over rough road surfaces well, particularly at speeds above 80km/h.

The 1.4 TFSI is a refined and perky engine that can shut off two of its cylinders for fuel saving, keeping economy to a mere 5.3L/100km. Unlike the other two it is front-wheel-drive and has a less sophisticated rear suspension set up, though it manages relatively well.

The 2.0 TDI has all-wheel-drive and a more advanced multi-link rear suspension, however the heavier weight of the engine makes it more susceptible to understeer. That said, its electromechanical steering is natural and has enough feel to encourage sporty manoeuvring. It’s a more involving drive than the average small SUV.

The 2.0 TFSI is the performance flagship of the range. It has considerably more power than the 1.4 TFSI and the engine’s light weight means a more compliant suspension than in the 2.0 TDI. Apart from the raised ride height it feels like you’re driving a hatchback.

How is life in the rear seats?

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The Audi Q2 has the same wheelbase length (that is the distance between the front and rear wheels) as the larger Q3, meaning a similarly sized interior.

The middle rear seat is only good for kids, particularly in the all-wheel-drive models which have a hump in the middle of the floor to accommodate the driveshaft to the rear wheels.

The outer rear seats, however, offer plenty of leg and head room even for taller adults.

The rear seatbacks fold down in a standard a 60/40 split, however there is an optional 40/20/40 split seatback, which includes a fold down centre armrest with cup holders.

Side and front vision is good.

There are no rear air vents or easily accessible USB or 12V sockets to plug in and charge mobile devices, unless you get the Comfort package, which adds a 12 volt socket on the rear of the centre console.

How is it the Q2 carrying stuff?

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Boot space is 355 litres which is below the average size for small SUVs. With the rear seats folded down the cargo area extends to 1000 litres.

Where is the Q2 made?

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All Audi Q2 models are assembled at Audi’s Inglosdtadt factory in Germany.

Are there any rivals I should consider?

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There are a growing number of small luxury SUVs entering the market that are worth a look when considering the Audi Q2, including the Mini Countryman, Mercedes-Benz GLA, BMW X1 and the Jaguar E-Pace.

I like this car, but I can't choose which version. Can you help?

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The 2.0 TFSI is the best all-round in terms of performance and safety. It’s quick and handles itself well over rough surfaces and through bends. It comes with a few extras over the 1.4 TFSI, not least the quattro all-wheel-drive system, and blind spot alert. That said the 1.4 TFSI offers great value and is a good buy if most of your driving is in the city.

Of the option packs, the Technik package is hard to pass up thanks to the highly desirable Virtual Cockpit digital dashboard.

Are there plans to update this model soon?

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The Audi Q2 arrived in Australia in February 2017 with a two model line-up – the 1.4 TSI and 2.0 TDI quattro Sport.

The 2.0 TFSI was added to the range in November 2017 as part of the 2018 model year line-up. LED headlights and taillights became standard equipment across all three models at the same time.

Don’t expect any substantial upgrades until at least 2020.