Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus 5dr Pre-Model Car Review - February 2012

REVIEW
List Price: £42,155
Tax Band: J
Insurance Group: 33
MPG: 37.6
CO2: 199
0-62 Mph: 6.5 secs
BHP: 237 BHP
Range: 620 miles
CarSite Verdict:  4/5
If a small/medium 4x4 is what you require, the Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus 5-door has build-quality which is above reproach, and its 3.0-litre V6 and 7-speed Automatic gearbox make for a smooth ride. It gets the better of most in its class, but its undoubted quality comes at a premium, and its price tag aims it firmly at the BMW X3 xDrive 35d M Sport.

PROS:  A small/medium 4x4 which has exceptional build quality and high residual values, and almost feels like a large conventional estate car to drive.

CONS:  It has the feel of a large conventional estate car to drive, so here’s an idea – save yourself some money and buy a large conventional estate car.

Behind the Wheel

The Audi Q5 3.0-litre TDI Quattro S Line Plus 5-door is powered by a 243bhp V6 diesel engine. It powers the Q5 from 0-62mph in 6.5 seconds, a very competitive time in the small/medium 4x4 class. The Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus 5-door is fitted with a 7-speed S-tronic gearbox, which is smooth and efficient.

Based on the A4 platform, the Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus drives very much like a car. The seating position feels low and more like a large estate car than a 4x4, and both the steering and body control are very good. While it is no Land Rover, it does perform capably in off-road conditions, with 200mm of ground clearance, and approach and departure angles of 25 degrees.

Looks & Equipment

Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus’ stylish design is very much car-inspired, and is reminiscent of a taller version of a large estate car. Inside the car, the interior is praiseworthy for its spaciousness, comfort, and build quality that is the match of any car in its class.

The Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus is also well-equipped compared to its competitors, with standard features including stability control, alloy wheels, climate control, electric door mirrors and front windows, cruise control, rear parking sensors, driver airbag, passenger airbag, front side airbags, CD player, MP3 connectivity, Bluetooth, and satnav.

Practicality, Safety & Reliability

The Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus has an overall Euro NCAP score of 5. It has stability control as standard, along with driver, passenger, and front side airbags.

Its C02 emissions of 199g/km put it into Road Tax Band J, higher than the similarly-priced BMW X3 xDrive 35d M Sport, or the Volvo XC60 D5 AWD R-Design Premium Geartronic. The Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus falls into insurance group 31, five groups higher than the top-spec Land Rover Freelander, the 2.2-litre SD4 HSE 5-door.

Boot space is competitive at 540 litres. This is in the same ball-park as the 550 litres afforded by the BMW X3, but some way short of the cavernous 755 litre boot in the 5-door Land Rover Freelander.

As a brand, Audi enjoys an excellent reputation for build quality and reliability, and the Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus comes with a 3-year, 60,000 mile warranty.

Value for Money

At £42,140 the Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus is almost on a par with the BMW X3 xDrive 35d M Sport. However, the BMW is more powerful, faster from 0-62mph, returns better fuel economy, and has lower C02 emissions and therefore lower road tax. The Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus is an excellent car, which performs well, is well-equipped, and compares very favourably with the top-spec Land Rover Freelander and Volvo XC60, but is around £5,000 more expensive to buy than those two rivals.

The Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus has a combined fuel economy of 37.6mpg. In comparison, the BMW X3 xDrive 35d M Sport returns a combined 46.3mpg.

It has large estate car styling, and gives a driving experience similar to a large estate car, and £2,000 less buys you an Audi A6 Avant 3.0-litre TDI Quattro S Line Multitronic, which is cheaper to tax and insure, and returns a combined 54.3mpg.

Audi traditionally enjoy excellent resale values, and the Audi Q5 3.0 TDI Quattro S Line Plus can be expected to perform well in this regard.

Audi Q5 3.0 TDI quattro S line Plus 5dr Pre-Model Car Review - by 
All Audi Q5 Reviews
Audi Q5 2.0 TFSI (180ps) quattro 5dr - February 2012
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Audi Q5 2.0 TDI (143ps) quattro SE 5dr Pre-Model - January 2012
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Small 4x4 Alternatives

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