2021 Audi Q5 preview: Big changes inside for compact crossover

by admin June 30, 2020 at 3:24 am

The 2021 Audi Q5 crossover slides right into our DMs and under our noses with interior improvements like a revenge bod at our 20th high-school reunion.

The new Q5 crossover isn’t a wholesale departure from the 2020 version. Instead, it’s a slight improvement over the current Audi crossover on sale. When it arrives later this year, it likely won’t turn many heads on appearances alone—it looks almost identical to the outgoing version. Instead, the Q5 aims to swaddle passengers with leather upholstery, ambient lighting, and upgraded infotainment—onlookers bedamned. A more dramatic styling departure could be in store later.

2021 Audi Q5

2021 Audi Q5

On the outside, the 2021 Q5 doesn’t ruin a good shape with an unhealthy diet of needless extras. Compared to the last Q5, the new one drops its big trapezoid grille slightly lower and flares its lower intakes. The standard LED headlights get new daytime running lights that reach back to the fenders with a crease that pops over the front wheels in barely-there wheel blisters. The new Q5 is only 1 inch longer than the outgoing version, which is down to bigger bumpers.

The rear taillights are OLED displays that change slightly in different drive modes and can light up when parked for approaching vehicles to see it better. Splendid. Now don’t hit the car.

2021 Audi Q5

2021 Audi Q5

Under the hood is a familiar 2.0-liter turbo-4 that makes 261 horsepower that is paired to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. An SQ5 is surely coming, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain also has been confirmed.

The Q5 will ride atop multilink front and rear suspensions, upgradeable to sport springs, steel springs with adaptive dampers, or an air suspension. Standard 17-inch wheels are fitted on all models, and up to 21-inch wheels are available.

2021 Audi Q5

2021 Audi Q5

Inside is where most of the Q5’s changes happened, although it’ll take an eagle eye or a critical need to calculate weather patterns to notice them. The big bump is in the Q5’s infotainment system’s hardware, which now uses Audi’s MIB3 system that includes faster processors to power a 10.1-inch touchscreen and an available 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster. The touchscreen still looks bolted onto the dash, rather than integrated into it like the A6, A7, or A8. Audi promises more connectivity with the infotainment system, including over-the-air updates and real-time traffic information. A head-up display is available on top models.

Automatic emergency braking is standard on the 2021 Q5, and spend-up systems such as adaptive cruise, active lane control, and blind-spot monitors are available.

2021 Audi Q5

2021 Audi Q5

The 2021 Audi Q5 will go on sale in the fall. Audi hasn’t yet said how much it will cost.

For more on the Audi Q5, read the in-depth reviews at The Car Connection.

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