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A Perfect Balance: 2018 Audi SQ5 SUV

With increased power and a more progressive, sporty design, the all-new Audi SQ5 made its global debut at the North American International Auto Show. New for 2018, the second-generation SQ5 offers a full suite of available driver assistance systems and advanced infotainment features, combined with a dynamic driving experience, to set a new standard in the luxury performance crossover segment.

The 2018 SQ5 exterior mirrors the Q5’s distinctive Audi “Q” SUV design language, with a flat, coupe-like roof line coupled with a strong, wave-design shoulder line and pronounced wheel arches. The SQ5 is characteristically recognized by its sporty design differentiators including a platinum gray Singleframe® grille with aluminum optic double horizontal blade bars, aluminum optic exterior side mirrors, and S model rear roof spoiler. Sculpted, three-dimensional LED headlights flow in harmony with the clamshell hood to the wider horizontal rear of the vehicle and LED taillights with dynamic turn signals.

Available in Premium Plus and Prestige trim levels, power for the all-new SQ5 features a 3.0L TFSI® engine that is joined to an eight-speed tiptronic® automatic transmission. Every Audi SQ5 is standard-equipped with quattro® all-wheel drive, offering high-precision and dynamic handling through active torque distribution to both axles. As part of the available S sport package, the SQ5 with quattro® sport rear differential can offer an even more dynamic driving experience by actively splitting torque between the wheels of the rear axle, with the ability to direct nearly all torque to one wheel, helping maximize driving dynamics.

A newly developed front and rear suspension allows for both a sporty driving experience and more comfortable ride for long distances. The new front five-link suspension with lightweight construction offers greater steering precision and excellent handling through optimized steering-rack placement direct at wheel centers.

The available S sport package also includes, for the first time on the SQ5, a sport adaptive air suspension, which lowers vehicle height by 30 mm (when in auto mode) compared to the standard adaptive suspension. The air suspension system allows for adjustment of both the ride height and the firmness of the dampers and is controllable via the standard Audi drive select.
Along with the standard four drive select modes – comfort, auto, dynamic and individual – the available sport adaptive air suspension also adds both an allroad and a lift/offroad mode, which raise the air suspension for increased ground clearance when needed.

Inside the passenger cabin, the interior offers improved space compared to the previous generation, with more rear legroom and shoulder room, as well as increased cargo capacity with the second-row seats folded down. The SQ5 is also equipped with a three-spoke multifunction flat-bottom sport steering wheel, sport front seats with available diamond stitching, standard matte brushed aluminum inlays or available carbon atlas inlays and standard stainless steel door sill inlays with S badging. The asymmetrical center console of the interior creates a driver-focused cockpit while a small number of controls with expanded functionality helps bring a greater ease of operation into the SQ5.

The new SQ5 also offers advanced infotainment options including MMI® touch® with handwriting-recognition technology, Bang & Olufsen® sound system with 3D sound and standard Audi smartphone interface, which provides Apple CarPlay™ and Google™ Android Auto integration. Also available is the Audi virtual cockpit, which helps make viewing and navigating via the large Google Earth™ images supported with 4G LTE (where available) easier on the driver’s eyes.

Unique to SQ5, the virtual cockpit features a “sport” display mode, which brings the tachometer and speedometer to the front and center of the display and adds a boost gauge and lap timer. Also available is a full-color head-up display which projects relevant driving information directly in the driver’s field of vision.

Dimensions and specifications
Wheelbase: 111.2; overall length: 183.9; width: 74.5; height: 65.3
All vehicle measurements are in inches.

Engine: 3.0L turbo-charged V6 – 354 hp at 5400-6400 rpm and 369 lb-ft of torque at 1370-4500 rpm.
Transmission: eight-speed automatic
EPA Fuel Economy: 19 city/24 highway
Cargo capacity: 60.4 cubic feet
Towing capacity: 4,400 pounds

Safety features
Dual front airbags, front seat-mounted side-impact airbags, Sideguard head curtain airbags, four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, electronic stability control with off-road model and secondary brake assist, traction control, hill descent control, Audi connect CARE, Bluetooth hands free phone system, HomeLink garage door opener, Audi advanced key – keyless start/stop and entry, rain/light sensor for automatic windshield wipers and headlights, Audi pre sense basic, Audi side assist with Audi pre sense rear, Audi pre sense city, rear view camera, parking system plus, anti-theft alarm with motion sensors and vehicle immobilizer, and tire pressure monitoring system. Prestige adds MMI navigation plus, Audi connect PRIME, head-up display, sport adaptive air suspension, quattro sport rear differential, and rear-passenger thorax side airbags.

Basic: 4-year/50,000 mile

The base Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the 2018 Audi SQ5 SUV starts from $54,300 for the SQ5 Premium Plus and $58,500 for the SQ5 Prestige. Destination charges add $975.

About the Author

Ken Chester, Jr.

Ken Chester, Jr. is President & CEO of Motor News Media Corporation – an automotive news service founded in 1989 as The AutoBuyer Plus Corporation. Featured on numerous television and radio programs, viewers, listeners and readers alike relate to Ken's friendly manner and wealth of information about the many vehicles currently for sale in today's complex automotive marketplace.

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