For those who think all Audis look the same, we present the Q2. This is Audi’s first even-numbered Q car and if that doesn’t make it unusual enough, just look at it. The flowing tornado line that has graced the flanks of recent Audis appears to have exited along with former design chief Walter de Silva. In its place is a geometrically kinky waistline complete with two stealthy triangles that create added surface intrigue. There’s a rethink on the headlamp to grille relationship while the upright grille gains a more octagonal shape. Also new, and subjectively less successful is the inclusion of a contrast colour C-pillar in either black or silver depending on design line – Hyundai i20 anyone?
An overall length just shy of 4.2 metres, a width of 1.79m and a wheelbase of 2.6m means the Q2 is roughly the size of a Renault Captur. Audi claims luggage capacity is 405 litres, growing to 1050 with the rear seats folded – pretty large, hopefully there’s still a bit of legroom for the second rowers.
Underpinning the Q2 is a platform derived from the A1/Polo which means front-wheel drive, MacPherson strut front and torsion beam rear suspension. However, as you’d expect from a Q-car, all-wheel drive Quattro versions are available, and, as with the S1, these swap to a multilink setup at the rear. Interestingly, variable ratio steering is standard, while adaptive dampers and Audi Drive Select system are optional. High-end stuff for the littlest Q.
Petrol engines range from a 1.0-litre turbo triple producing 85kW to a 140kW, 2.0-litre TFSI while diesel fans can choose from either 1.6- or 2.0-litre four cylinder powertrains. Transmission options comprise six-speed manual and seven-speed dual-clutch units.
No surprises inside. Judging by the images, the sporty interior looks as well made as ever, with more than a hint of TT about the layout, just with added seat upholstery and interior trim customisation opportunities. The Q2 can be optioned with all of Audi’s newest cabin kit including its Virtual Cockpit (full digital instrumentation) and head-up display as well as the full array of driver aids from adaptive cruise control to lane departure and lane keeping. Audi’s Pre Sense system (collision warning and pedestrian detection with auto brake) is standard.
Right-hand drive models should come on stream in the third quarter of 2016 with the first units expected to land in SA in the first quarter of 2017.