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Audi Q2 Review

Find out more about the Audi Q2 in the latest Motors.co.uk Review

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8
Out of 10
Average Price £25,043
Model Review

 The Audi ‘Q’ range is extensive to say the least, with the Q3, Q5 and Q7 all taking pride of place in the various sectors.

 But the Q2 announced that Audi were looking to completely dominate every element of the SUV and crossover market with their smallest offering yet.

 Coming with a customisable design, well-performing engines and an excellent finish, the Q2 has a lot going for it – even if many of its main rivals are markedly cheaper.

 As with many Audis, it drives well and can be a lot of fun, but be careful not to pick too many options as the prices can increase very sharply, very quickly.

Value for money

 So what do you get with the latest Audi model? Well, in SE trim customers will find 16-inch alloys, dynamic suspension, cruise control, Audi Pre-sense Front with pedestrian recognition, rear parking sensors, Audi’s MMI radio plus with seven-inch screen and controller, Bluetooth and mobile interface, three-spoke multi-function leather steering wheel and contrasting exterior elements – such as the front bumper and C-pillar. The starting price for the Q2 in SE trim is £21,360, which when compared to the rest of its rivals is quite expensive – especially when you don’t get that much in return.

 Higher spec models do, obviously, come with more equipment but the cost for the high-end Edition #1 model starts at £32,150 – which for a small crossover is quite excessive. That puts the Q2 in the firing line of Mercedes, BMW and MINI, which is esteemed company to be in for such a new model.

 
Looks and image

 One thing that is for certain with the Q2 is that you will get noticed. The angular styling can be a bit marmite in nature and may not appeal, but Audi has made sure the Q2 has plenty of customisation options where you can alter the body and C-pillar colours. It does fit in with the rest of the ‘Q’ range in its design with its bold styling and is arguably one of the better looking crossovers currently on sale. The interior is just as customisable with the main console panel available in multiple colours and the seats are available in material or leather, with sports seats also on offer.

 As it built on the same base as the Audi A3 and Volkswagen’s Golf, the Q2 is a well-balanced and well-handling car – even if it is a taller car than many of its chassis counterparts. It does lean more through the corners, but not too much, and comes with progressive steering that gets lighter the more you turn the wheel for easier movement – at slower speeds and around town that is a very handy feature indeed. All the engines do cope with the size of the Q2, but you’re best going with the 1.4-litre and 2.0-litre petrol engines or either diesel, as they have more oomph for the standard day-to-day grind and are more refined than the base 1.0-litre petrol. Higher spec models also get adaptive suspension, which smooths out the bumps on most surfaces and can be leant on a lot through the corners. The quattro all-wheel drive system is also available on the most powerful engines for that reassurance of grip in slippier conditions.

 Depending on which trim level you get the ride can either be very pliant and comfortable or very shaky and quite skittish at the back end. The higher spec models come with sports suspension as standard, which is very firm especially when paired with the larger alloys that are fitted normally. In those models it is worth upgrading to the adaptive suspension, as in comfort mode it is a very nice car to drive and in the more dynamic mode it can hunker down and give better cornering when needed. Even if it is taller than the A3 and Golf, it actually feels like you’re sitting quite low down and it does feel more like you’re in a hatchback rather than an SUV, which is good.

Space and practicality 

 Some compact SUVs have trouble with making the most of the space available to them in such a small wheelbase, and despite the best efforts of the Audi engineers there is only so much they could have done. Front passenger space is good with plenty of head and shoulder room, but that doesn’t transfer into the back seats as taller passengers will struggle with both head and leg room. You can fit two adults in the back, but three is nigh on impossible and would be rather uncomfortable. Boot space is okay but not fantastic at 405 litres, but that can be extended to 1,050 litres with the rear seats folded down.

 After being tested by Euro NCAP, the Q2 got an impressive five-star rating with all of the individual segments scoring at least 70 per cent – adult safety scored a superb 93 per cent. You get six airbags as standard, as well as autonomous emergency braking, pre-sense front with pedestrian recognition, rear parking sensors and cruise control. Stability control and ABS also comes as standard. Other systems available include park assist, cross-traffic rear assist, adaptive cruise control, active lane assist, side assist and head-up display.

 For families the Q2 could be a very tempting choice, as it is frugal with fuel, secure with lots of safety systems and Isofix points for child seats, and enough space for a good amount of luggage. The only thing that may push families away is the price, but it is a funky car that is justifiable due to the quality finish and excellent reliability.

 

Engines

 Following the addition of the 2.0-litre petrol in the middle of 2017, the Q2 has five engine options for you to choose from – three petrol and two diesel. Both the 2.0-litre 147 bhp diesel and 187bhp petrol units come with quattro all-wheel drive and Audi seven-speed S tronic automatic transmission with flappy paddles for manual control when needed. The most popular unit is likely to be the 1.4-litre 147bhp petrol, as it is peppy, well-tuned and copes well with day-to-day work. That being said, the 1.6-litre TDI diesel unit with 114bhp is likely to be a good choice too, with lower emissions and better fuel economy.

Running costs 

 Only the 1.6-litre TDI with the automatic gearbox dips below 110g/km CO2, so is the only one eligible for £140 for the first year of road tax. Every other engine comes into the £160 bracket bar the new 2.0-litre TFSI petrol, which drops into the £200 band due to its 146g/km CO2 emissions. All will cost £140 to tax from the second year onwards. The cheapest one to run is the 1.6-litre TDI thanks to its 62.8mpg efficiency, but all of the engines return well above 40mpg so it won’t be too bad for whichever one you go for. Insurance groups aren’t too bad for the range, with the lower spec models fitting into group 13, while the highest you will get is with the Edition #1 models in group 23.

 

Rivals

 The small crossover is constantly growing as new models seem to be added or refreshed on a regular basis. The main rivals for the Q2 come from German or German-owned brands, as Mercedes’s GLA, the BMW X1 and the MINI Countryman are at the premium end of the market – all of which come with high-end pricing. They all compete at a similar level of quality but the Audi stacks up well against all of them thanks to its quality finish and rather good driving dynamics. Cheaper small crossovers like the Nissan Juke, Peugeot’s 2008 and the Renault Captur all are good in their own right and can undercut the Q2 significantly, but none of them can match the Q2’s quality finish that sets it well apart from the rest of the pack.

Which Q2 to Pick

Trims Explained

The Q2 comes in four well-specced trim levels – SE, Sport, S line and Edition #1 – and they all place well in the price structure.

SE

In the base SE trim, Audi applies 16-inch alloy wheels, dynamic suspension, contrasting bumpers, metallic grey C-pillar, rear parking sensors, pre-sense front with pedestrian recognition, cruise control, Bluetooth with smartphone interface on the seven-inch MMI screen, MMI radio plus with controller, multifunctional leather steering wheel, cloth upholstery, front central armrest and inlays in white or orange. You do also get progressive steering for easier direction change at speed, manual air conditioning, USB/Aux ports with music interface and autonomous emergency braking.

That is plenty of kit for the £21,360 starting price, which is lower than many of its main rivals.

Sport

The Sport spec comes with more technological features, such as Audi Drive Select, satellite navigation and Audi’s Connect Infotainment service, as well as an eight-speaker stereo system. Cosmetic changes include the C-pillar in metallic silver, body colour bumpers if chosen, black gloss radiator grille, silver underbody guards and extra colour choices for the dashboard. The seat upholstery is also available in Index cloth.

Considering the amount of equipment added, the £22,760 starting price isn’t too excessive and could be the pick of the range.

S Line

S line models gain more cosmetic upgrades, such as larger 18-inch alloys, LED head and rear lights with dynamic indicators and S line body styling kit, as well as the matt grey C-pillar, body-coloured bumpers and aluminium detailing. You do also get the choice of sport or dynamic suspension depending on your taste, a perforated leather ‘S’ multifunction steering wheel, sports seats, the LED interior lighting pack and stainless steel pedals.

The S line is arguably the most attractive trim for the Q2, but it comes at a cost of £27,160 – a significant leap from the Sport model.

Edition #1

The most expensive of the range and stand-out model is the Edition #1, mainly thanks to bold styling cues and lots of premium equipment. The exterior changes include the 19-inch black ‘Rotor’ alloys, the black styling pack, S line body styling and badging, and trim-exclusive solid quantum grey paint. Inside, customers will find grey nappa leather seats with brown contrast stitching, illuminated inlays with colour choice, aluminium interior elements, Audi Connect Infotainment system, satellite navigation and an eight-speaker sound system.

In Summary

  1. Fun to drive
  2. Can be firm in higher specs
  3. All of the engines perform well
  4. Reliability isn’t an issue
  5. Lots of high-quality features
  6. Space could be better
  7. Can be very pricey
  8. Lots of customisation available
  9. Good trim choices
  10. Excellent safety record