Audi only secured the naming rights to the Q2 and Q4 trademarks in the last few weeks — coming right down to the wire before the car’s global debut in Geneva this week.
Alfa Romeo had resisted giving their Q2 and Q4 drivetrain descriptors up until recently, and Audi likely paid big loot for the privilege.
So just imagine — this car went through the entire VW/Audi development cycle without a confirmed name!
And it does show, a bit, in that the Q2 makes little visual sense in the Audi lineup. Its design is far more modern than the new Q3, and its dimensions inside and out make the Q2 only millimeters smaller than the Q3 too.
So where does it fit? Will it overlap with the Q3?
First off, the Q2 represents a big next step for Audi’s design language and appeal among young, global yuppies. And crucially, the Q2 will be dramatically cheaper than the Q3 at all spec levels. Despite their similar sizes and lower roof of the Q2, the latest Audi crossover is much more humble under its skin. The top engine so far makes just 190HP, for example, versus the 250-ish from the Q3. Other mechanical elements are subtly simplified as well to get the price down to a friendlier, $30k estimated base in the US.
But with simpler oily bits comes advanced tech and next-level design appeal.
The Q2 certainly looks unlike any other Audi lately, notably the Xerox-copy updates of the A6, Q7 and A4 in the last year.
So it does look new. A new interpretation of the singleframe grille brings paints bodywork sections to both sides of the chrome-ringed intake. The headlamps are slightly canted upward in a way that is radically different from the Q3.
New split-beltline crease-work extends up and down between the fenders and through the doorline. An all-new take on the hood, A-pillar and windshield is visible when the technical drawings are viewed back-to-back for the Q2 versus Q3.
Same goes for the rear quarter window. Or lack thereof!
The arc of glass in the Q3 is just like every Audi in our lifetimes, and not exactly the better for it.
In its place for the Q2? Silver or black panels. No glass. Just a blocked out super C-pillar with thickness more like the VW Golf than any Audi.
It looks weird at first. No denying that. Any cheap. Paired with the solid lines of rear door and window, it is a blocky look that is not instantly successful.
But paired with the new nose and its chinstrap of brightwork… the new D-pillar does balance out the look in a funky, youthful way.
A new-look tail is also very VW-ish, curiously. Here are 110 photos and the initial press details for you to decide for yourself!
You will have plenty of time if you are in the USA. First orders open in July for Euro buyers, with initial deliveries around September of 2016 as a 2017 model-year.
The US arrival is a few months behind that: expect the new Q2 to start rocking the Audi sales charts as soon as January 2017 worldwide.
2017 Audi Q2
Young and provocative: the new Audi Q2
Whether it is used for an off-road adventure or for everyday driving in a big city – the Audi Q2* is the all-round vehicle. Youthful and provocative in its styling and with all sorts of high-tech equipment on-board, it is now being presented to the public at the Geneva International Motor Show.
At first glance the Q2 already shows its muscles. With broad shoulders and angular styling, it is brimming with energy and confidence. The roofline and the low glass house give the sporty car a coupe-like look and a crouching stance on the road. Especially striking are the wedge-shaped headlights, the high position of the Singleframe grille and the generously sized air inlets. The rear body has a dynamic appearance with a long roof spoiler and a diffuser with an underbody protection look. Behind the tailgate is a large luggage compartment with lots of space for sports equipment or plenty of shopping items. A power opening and closing tailgate is available as an option. A practical feature is the cargo passthrough in the rear bench seat that makes it easy to transport skis or shelving.
Form follows function – in the cockpit too. The driver’s seat position is sporty and low like in an Audi sedan, but all-round visibility is very good as is typical of an SUV. In the connectivity and infotainment area, the Q2 offers technologies from the full-size class. The driver can use the optional touchpad to scroll through a clearly structured menu, while passengers can surf and stream with smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices via a Wi-Fi hotspot. The speedometer and tachometer glow in the optional fully-digital Audi virtual cockpit, whose 12.3-inch screen displays highly detailed and brilliant graphics. The head-up display projects key vehicle data, including navigation instructions and driving speed, into the driver’s direct visual field. And because that is simply not enough, if desired Audi online services can display, for instance, parking place information, fuel prices or the latest news on the screen of the infotainment system. Twitter and select smartphone content can also be displayed in the vehicle in this way. The flat rate data plan required for this is included thanks to the SIM card that is permanently installed in the Q2.
A free app enables online media streaming and lets users transfer the calendar of a smartphone to the car’s screen. If the smartphone has an iOS operating system, it is even possible to transfer the address of a favorite restaurant or hotel directly into the Q2 navigation system.
Offering assistance in critical situations is the standard emergency braking assistant. If a child were to suddenly run into the street, or the car ahead were to brake abruptly to a stop, the Q2 can brake automatically in such situations. On top of that – if the relevant check mark is set in the equipment list – the car can autonomously maintain a distance to the vehicle ahead, monitor the blind spot, recognize traffic signs and assist in lane-keeping from a speed of 60 km/h (37.3 mph). The 4.19 meter (13.7 ft) long SUV can even steer into parallel or perpendicular parking spaces – either in a reverse or forward direction. It can also exit parking spaces. The driver only needs to set the right gear, accelerate and brake.
With short overhangs and 20 cm (7.9 in) of ground clearance the Q2 scrambles up slopes effortlessly. The permanent all-wheel drive system supplies the necessary traction and grip. It is standard with the top diesel and gasoline engines. Both engines are paired with a newly developed seven-speed automatic. At lightning speed, the dual-clutch transmission changes gears and offers seamless driving pleasure. Those who would rather grip the gear shift lever themselves will enjoy the crisp and precise shifts of the manual transmission. Audi is sending the Q2 to its launch with six engines, three TFSI and three TDI engines with between 85 kW (116 hp) and 140 kW (190 hp) of power output.
The compact SUV arrives at dealers this fall. After that, there is nothing to prevent a test drive.
Stage debut: the new Audi Q2
Audi is revealing the new Audi Q2* at the Geneva International Motor Show. The compact SUV is an urban-type vehicle for everyday driving and recreation, uniting a progressive design with a high level of functionality. Connectivity, infotainment and assistance systems are on level of full-size class.
“In the Audi Q2 we have developed a distinctively geometric form language with model-specific design characteristics. The car exhibits an independent character within the Q family,” says Audi Head of Design Marc Lichte.
The result: a powerful SUV that shows a lot of vertices and edges. At the front, a strong image is created by the Singleframe grille in octagonal design that is positioned high as well as large air inlets. Especially eye-catching is the low roof that descends and merges into the C-pillars with color offset blades. This contrast accentuates the sportiness of the Audi Q2. The rear body terminates in a dynamic way with a long roof spoiler and a diffuser that has an underbodyprotection look. In a side view, the high shoulder line is especially eye-catching as are the concave flanks in the door area. The latter emphasize the wheel housings and thereby the quattro character of the compact SUV. The vehicle measures 1.51 meters (5.0 ft) tall and 1.79 meters (5.9 ft) wide. The overhangs are short with a vehicle length of 4.19 meters (13.7 ft) and a wheelbase of
2.60 meters (8.5 ft).
Technology from the full-size class
Along with the optional Audi virtual cockpit and the head-up display, the driver assistance systems for the Audi Q2 also come from the full-size class – including the Audi pre sense front that is standard. The system recognizes critical situations with other vehicles as well as pedestrians crossing in front of the vehicle, and if necessary it can initiate hard braking – to a standstill at low speeds. Other systems in the line-up: adaptive cruise control with Stop & Go function, traffic jam assist, the lane-departure warning system Audi side assist, the lane-keeping assistant Audi active lane assist, traffic sign recognition and parking and cross-traffic assist rear.
The Q2 is equipped with a standard MMI screen that is positioned high on the instrument panel. The infotainment system can be operated by a rotary/pushbutton control and two buttons on the center tunnel. When MMI navigation plus with MMI touch is ordered, the user also gets a touchpad on the central control element. In addition, the system can be conveniently controlled by natural language operation and the integrated MMI search. A Wi-Fi hotspot enables surfing and streaming with mobile end devices. Furthermore, customers can use MMI touch to query the online services of Audi connect. The flat rate data plan required for this is included thanks to the SIM card (embedded SIM) that is permanently installed in the car. It also permits roaming in most European countries. Cell phones with iOS and Android operating systems are integrated into the car via the Audi smartphone interface. The free Audi MMI connect app enables online media streaming and transfer of a calendar from a smartphone to the MMI. The app for iOS operating systems also has the myAudi destinations function. It makes it possible to send the data of a desired navigation destination from any app to the MMI navigation plus system. The system then uses it for navigation.
The Q2 fulfills fundamental expectations of an SUV with a high entry, good visibility and a large luggage compartment (405 to 1,050 liters (14.3 – 37.1 cu ft) of capacity). The highlight is that the driver’s seat position is sporty and low in relation to the steering wheel like in an Audi sedan. Optional practical solutions are available such as a power tailgate and a three-way split rear bench backrests with cargo through-loading.
The Audi Q2 is as individual as its drivers – inside and out. Many equipment packages, exterior colors and expressive colors for interior trim and seat upholstery allow plenty of creative space for personal configuration. One option is the LED lighting package, in which the interior is staged in a particularly attractive way with illuminated trim elements.
Drivetrain and chassis
The Q2 is launching with a selection of six different engines. Along with a 1.0-liter three-cylinder TFSI, two four-cylinder gasoline engines are being offered with 1.4 and 2.0 liters of displacement. In addition, three four-cylinder diesel engines are available with 1.6 and 2.0 liters of displacement. Their power output ranges from 85 kW (116 hp) to 140 kW (190 hp). As an alternative to the six-speed manual transmission, Audi also offers the S tronic dual clutch transmission with seven speeds for all engines. In the case of the top TDI and the 2.0 TFSI, a newly developed dual-clutch transmission is used, which has a new type of oil supply and reduced friction. Both engines may also be combined with a quattro permanent all-wheel drive system as standard equipment. Installed at the rear on the front-wheel drive versions is a semi-independent suspension, while the quattro models have a four-link suspension. Progressive steering is standard in all versions. It varies the steering gear ratio as a function of the steering input; the ratio is made more direct with large steering movements. Adaptive dampers are available as an option, as is the Audi drive select system with which drivers can set an individual characteristic for their Q2.
The Audi Q2 launches on the European market in autumn 2016. Ordering begins mid-year for the compact SUV.
2017 Audi Q2
Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly-expanding automotive news magazine.
He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank.
Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.