The Q5’s one of the most relaxing SUVs to cruise around in – it’s so much quieter than a Jaguar F-Pace, but also nowhere near as fun
You can get the Q5 with one petrol and two diesel engines. All models come with quattro four-wheel drive and a seven-speed automatic gearbox as standard.
The 2.0-litre petrol is worth considering if you spend most time pootling around town. It’ll only return around 30mpg but it’s a tad quieter on the move than the less-powerful diesel model and slightly smoother, too.
It’s more than quick enough to keep up with fast-moving traffic and it even comes with launch control – just like a supercar. Stick its automatic gearbox in sports mode, floor the throttle and release the brake and it’ll sprint from 0-62mph in a little over six seconds. The kids will love you for it.
It prioritises comfort over cornering, but in a practical family SUV that’s no bad thing
The 190hp 2.0-litre diesel will be a better bet if you spend more time on the motorway. It’s very nearly as smooth as the petrol on the move but will return a more wallet-friendly 40mpg in normal driving. It’s not quite as quick, but around town or on the school run you’ll hardly notice the difference. If you’re going to be using your Q5 for towing or just fancy the idea of effortless motorway performance on tap, consider the 286hp 3.0-litre diesel.
Audi’s quattro four-wheel-drive system comes fitted as standard to all Q5s and helps it offer excellent grip, even in slippery conditions. It’ll happily cope with the odd wintry spell but isn’t quite as capable of heading off the beaten track as a Land Rover Discovery Sport.
The Q5’s raised driving position offers a great view of the road ahead and its slim door pillars don’t produce any awkward blind spots. Checking over your shoulder for overtaking traffic on the motorway is easy and the rear windscreen gives you a good view behind, too.
Around town it can feel a little on the large side but front and rear parking sensors come fitted to all models as standard to help you nose into tight spaces without breaking a sweat. Pick the £1,350 Parking Assistance Pack for even greater peace of mind – it comes with a 360-degree camera and a self-parking feature that’ll steer you into parallel and bay spaces automatically.
The Q5’s standard suspension soaks up bumps and potholes reasonably well but the no-cost option sports suspension offered on S line models makes it feel a little too firm. Adaptive dampers – that let you choose between sporty or more comfortable setups – are available for £900 but they’re outclassed by the exceptional £2,000 air suspension system. It might be expensive but it makes the Q5 drive more like a limousine – even over poorly maintained roads.
The standard quattro four-wheel-drive system offers plenty of grip in the corners and its tall body doesn’t lean excessively in tight bends but you can’t exactly call the Q5 sporty. It’s an excellent motorway cruiser, however. There’s less tyre noise than you’ll hear in the likes of the BMW X3 and Mercedes GLC and almost no wind noise at all.
The Q5 received an impressive five-star Euro NCAP safety rating in 2017’s strict tests. If you want to make this family SUV even safer, however, you can have Audi fit additional rear side airbags for £350 and a system that’ll tighten the front seat belts and close the windows if it detects a potential collision for £250.
Automatic emergency braking comes as standard on all models but you can pay an extra £750 for an advanced cruise control system that’ll brake, accelerate and even steer slightly for you on the motorway – provided you keep your hands on the wheel.