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Dublin: -1°C Tuesday 18 January 2022

The new Audi Q2: Does the small SUV make a big impression?

We test the compact SUV on Irish roads.

Image: Paddy McGrath

THE AUDI Q2 is a small SUV with big ideas.

I was quite taken with the Q2 when I first laid eyes on it. Not only did I love the bright Vegas Yellow paint job but I really liked the unusual design – especially the sharp creases in the metal.

The big bold grill and low, wide stance makes the car look purposeful, and the sloping roofline gives it a sporty look, as do the fake air vents in the front and the twin exhausts at the rear.

Source: Paddy McGrath

Inside, the cabin follows Audi’s latest design style and looks very funky with its customisable inlays. My test car had an anodised paint finish in white that really brought the cabin to life. The rest of the cabin, finished in brushed aluminium, black cloth and leather, feels very modern and sporty as well as clean and minimal.

The Audi Q2 is available in SE and S lines. This test car was S-line trim and featured 18-inch five-spoke Y design alloys, LED headlights and LED interior lighting. However, the SE models come with 17-inch multi-spoke design alloy wheels, cruise control and speed limiter, rear parking sensors, light and rain sensor and the Audi Smartphone Interface as standard. Also as standard are plenty of safety features, including forward collision warning and autonomous emergency braking.

Source: Newspress

The Q2 is built on the scalable MQB architecture. It is 412.1 cm long, meaning it is longer than the Audi A1 and shorter than the A3 or Q3 – but clever design means it is almost as spacious inside as the Q3.

Leg and head room is generous for all occupants. The boot is big too – it can hold 405 to 1,050 litres, just 15 litres less than the larger Q3.

Source: Newspress

The Q2 doesn’t just share a platform with the A3 it also uses the same petrol and diesel engines, and my test car was powered by the peppy 1.4 TFSI 150hp petrol unit. I found this engine to be smooth, refined, quiet and eager and never lacking in performance.

It has 250Nm of torque which is available from just 1,500rpm so you can make decent progress from the get go. My test car was equipped with the lovely seven-speed S-Tronic automatic gearbox, which was responsive and slick. If you feel the need to take control there are paddles behind the steering wheel, but I never felt the urge to use these much as the transmission was doing such a good job.

Source: Paddy McGrath

The Q2 gets Audi’s Progressive Steering system which varies the number of turns from lock to lock according to the vehicle’s speed. This means that for example, when pulling out of a tight parking space, the steering wheel requires fewer turns.

The steering is nicely weighted too and feels accurate. This adds to the ease of driving the Q2 – but isn’t available on the 1.0-litre TFSI or 1.6-litre TDI engines.

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Source: Paddy McGrath

On the road, the car is surprisingly engaging to drive, for an Audi. The car feels light and responsive, and I would even go so far to say the chassis is a little playful. I had a grin on my face whenever I was behind the wheel. There is plenty of grip and, thanks to the car’s wide track, there isn’t much body roll when cornering. This all contributed to wanting to push the car a little bit harder on the road. And the car responded. Also, the engine sounds great and is a joy to rev out.

Source: Newspress

The suspension set up was on the firm side, but my test car did have the Sport Suspension and larger wheels – the ride should be more comfortable on the 17s. If you opt for the Audi Drive Select system and put it in comfort mode, it will be a fine long distance motorway cruiser.

Around town, it was easy to drive and the raised driving position made forward visibility great but rear visibility wasn’t the best. (That’s probably why rear parking sensors come as standard.)

The Audi Q2 in SE trim is priced from €30,100 and €33,400 in S line trim.

Source: Paddy McGrath

Overall, the little Q2 did make a big impression on me. It is a small SUV with big car dreams especially regarding cabin design and spaciousness. It looks and feels youthful, and out on the road it handles well and has a sweet chassis that has some life to it.

I must admit, I was a little gutted handing it back.

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About the author:

Melanie May  / https://www.melaniemay.com

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