Skip to main content

The biggest changes to Audi’s all-new Q5 go beneath the surface

Audi’s U.S.-bound RS3 sedan may be the brand’s biggest Paris Motor Show news, but the German automaker also introduced its next generation Q5 among Parisian festivities.

The Q5 luxury compact crossover has been on sale since 2009 and despite some minor tweaks since then, it has yet to receive a full makeover. A cursory glance at this all-new generation might miss the biggest changes, but there are several updates beneath the evolutionary design.

Audi’s best-selling crossover has adopted styling from its 2017 Q7 sibling, meaning the front fascia features the brand’s new single frame grille with horizontal bars in silver finish. The vehicle is a tad larger than the outgoing Q5, providing extra cargo capacity and legroom for rear passengers. Audi’s steel and aluminum platform is responsible for a weight reduction of 200lbs compared to the preceding model.

Read More: Audi Reveals Its RS3 Sedan In Paris

Capitalizing on the weight loss, Audi engineers have improved aerodynamics, reduced fuel consumption, and disconnected the rear axle when it’s not needed for an altogether more efficient package. To the benefit of its passengers, the Q5’s cabin is quieter thanks to a reduction in wind noise and vibration. In addition to the Q5’s damper settings for a more comfortable or sporty ride, ride height adjustments are now available.

Subtle styling tweaks aside, the Q5’s interior shows the greatest improvement. A Q7-esque dashboard layout, Virtual Cockpit driver display, ambient lighting, and new safety technologies push the new Q5 firmly into contemporary luxury territory.

Production will come from a brand new assembly plant in Mexico that opens on Friday. In Europe, the Q5 will be offered with five engine options, four of them being turbocharged diesel motors. Don’t expect America to see anything other than turbocharged gas motors after the Dieselgate shenanigans.

Speaking of the U.S., stateside buyers will have to wait until sometime late next year before placing orders, but European consumers will get a crack at the second-gen Q5 early 2017 at a starting price of $50,592.

Editors' Recommendations

Miles Branman
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Miles Branman doesn't need sustenance; he needs cars. While the gearhead gene wasn't strong in his own family, Miles…
The Kia EV3 could be the cheap electric SUV we’ve been waiting for
White Kia EV3

The Kia EV9 was already one of the cheapest ways to get an electric SUV, but now the company is taking things to the next level. After teasing the Kia EV3 last year, the car is now official.

The EV3 is built to be a slightly smaller, cheaper version of the EV9 -- following the path of the Rivian R2, which arrived after the Rivian R1S. It's certainly not as technologically advanced as the EV9, but it still looks unmistakably like a modern Kia, and is clearly a sibling of the larger SUV. On the outside, the vehicle has the same split taillights and very similar Tiger Face front. But it is quite a bit smaller. The vehicle will be available in nine finishes -- however only "Aventurine Green" and "Terracotta" are being announced right now.

Read more
Kia EV3: release date, performance, range, and more
White Kia EV3

Kia is on a roll. Hot on the heels of the success of the Kia EV6 and EV9, the company is already announcing what could be its cheapest electric vehicle yet -- the Kia EV3.

The Kia EV line seems to follow the rule of lower numbers indicating a lower price — and if so, the EV3 will end up being the cheapest electric car Kia has released to date. That, however, thankfully doesn’t mean that the EV3 will be a low-end car — it just means that Kia may be pushing the boundaries on electric car pricing.

Read more
Kia EV3 vs Tesla Model Y: Can Kia’s new entry-level car take on Tesla?
White Kia EV3

The Kia EV3 is finally coming, and it could well end up being the best small-size electric SUV to buy when it finally rolls out. It's smaller than the Kia EV9, but it offers many of the same design elements and features. But there's another small-size electric car that's currently one of the most popular vehicles out there -- the Tesla Model Y.

How does the Kia EV3 compare with the Tesla Model Y? And is one vehicle actually better than the other? We put the Kia EV3 and the Tesla Model Y head-to-head to find out.
The design of the Kia EV3 is very different than that of the Model Y, though they're both reasonably good-looking vehicles.

Read more