ONLY a few months after the return of the legendary SQ5 TDI, Audi Australia is preparing for the arrival of a new, refreshed model. The new version is sportier, more powerful and efficient, thanks to a revised 3.0-litre V6 engine boasting 251kW and 700Nm.
A striking design refresh also accompanies appealing equipment upgrades, positioning the new SQ5 TDI as a very special vehicle. But it’s the engine that’s most impressive, developing power sooner, and accelerating faster, to offer 0-100km/h in 5.1 seconds.
Fuel consumption is 7.0-litres/100km and an actuator in the exhaust system gives the V6 a distinctive and sonorous sound, controlled via Audi drive select. The powerplant sports new pistons, sensors, intercooler design and turbocharger.
In addition, the 48v mild hybrid system (MHEV) integrates a belt alternator starter (BAS) for advanced start/stop and coasting functionality, boosting efficiency by around 0.7-litre/100km.
To harness the engine’s power, the SQ5 TDI is equipped with a fast-shifting eight-speed tiptronic transmission, directing power to the road via quattro permanent all-wheel drive, for superb handling and traction.
The self-locking centre differential is able to direct 40 per cent of the torque to the front axle and 60 per cent to the rear in normal driving conditions, with up to 85 per cent directed to the rear wheels if the road conditions demand it.
The standard adaptive suspension with damper control sits the SQ5 30mm lower than the Q5 and ensures the perfect combination of ride comfort and dynamic performance, while the optional air suspension adjusts the ride height of the body through five levels.
Additionally, the optional quattro sport differential can provide further adjustment, directing almost all of the rear axle’s torque to either wheel during particularly dynamic driving.
The new, sportier design of the SQ5 TDI exudes a powerful stance, with striking details that give it a rugged appearance. This is complemented by attractive, Audi Sport 21-inch alloy wheels in 5-twin-spoke V design.
These house distinctive S brake callipers painted in a red high-gloss finish. Vertical fins provide structure to the large side-air inlets on the front bumpers. In the octagonal single frame grille, large octagonal honeycomb sections are linked by narrow bars.
They feature an aluminium finish, as do the fins on the air inlets. Matrix LED headlights are now standard, with continuous automatic high beam, dynamic turn signals and dynamic animations when locking and unlocking. Digital OLED rear lights are an option.
Customers have a choice of nine exterior paint finishes. The black styling package, which adds sporty accents, is available on request.
The hands-free electric tailgate and the simplicity of convenience keyless entry and start add to the feature list. The rear-window privacy glass keeps glare out, yet the touch of a button allows full sunshine to flood in, thanks to the panoramic sunroof.
Inside the cabin, the new SQ5 is endowed for comfort and versatility with intuitive new technology offering seamless integration of the Audi smartphone interface via Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay.
Unique displays in the standard Audi Virtual Cockpit Plus provide all necessary information for the driver, enhanced by the new 10.1-inch high-resolution MMI touch display. The beautifully crafted display is seamlessly integrated into the dashboard.
Additional features include wireless charging for mobile phones and two simultaneous Bluetooth connections, Digital DAB+ radio and four USB outlets (two in the rear).
For the first time ever, the new SQ5 offers the convenience of Audi Connect Plus functionality as well, with the integration of online traffic, weather conditions, fuel prices, parking information and Google Maps.
The myAudi smartphone app adds remote lock/unlock, service request, emergency call and more, thanks to the embedded SIM card. Additionally, the SQ5 TDI is equipped with the Bang & Olufsen 3D premium sound system (19 speakers, 755W).
There’s also a head-up display for enhanced safety and visibility. Luxurious and sporty, the interior of the SQ5 TDI boasts ambient lighting with the choice of over 30 different colour tones, allowing the driver to tailor the ambience to suit their mood.
Heating in the front seats provide unmatched comfort for the driver, while the 3-zone climate control feature allows passengers to regulate the temperature in the rear row.
The SQ5 TDI exhibits class-leading safety, equipped with an extensive range of driver assistance systems that contribute to its 5-star ANCAP safety rating.
Standard safety features include autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist, active lane assist, collision avoidance assist, rear cross-traffic assist, and park assist.
There’s also hill descent control, hold assist, as well as a comprehensive suite of parking sensors including the 360-degree and rear view cameras. The new SQ5 TDI will be offered with the comprehensive five-year Audi service plan package.
It’s expected to be in Audi showrooms from April, priced from $104,900 (plus on-roads). For further information, please contact your local Audi dealer.