New 2020 Audi Q2
Article by: Arnav Kulkarni, Siddharth Shirwadkar
The time has come to look into Audi’s latest gamble of a newer generation of SUV that goes toe-to-toe with the likes of the Volvo XC40, the X1 by BMW and the GLA from Mercedes. It’s been about a day or so since the new Audi Q2’s Indian variants features were leaked. There wouldn’t be a better time to take a look at Audi’s version of the modern SUV than on the brink of the car’s release on the 15th of October. So are the 4-rings offering a good deal to the lower-end market and giving the X1 or the GLA a run for their money? Is it a worthy buy? Let’s find out! RPMStyle 😏
The car has undergone some substantial cosmetic changes: it’s significantly smaller, in fact it is one of the smallest SUVs to hit the market. You could say Q2 sounds like you’re calling the car cute, and the reduced size makes it valid. It is the part of the range of smaller premium SUVs. What catches the eye is the grille which is slightly tweaked and now more in-sync with the proportions of the rest of the car. It makes the car look wider as a whole, giving it a sportier look which, to be honest, just works with the design language. The car is longer due to the changes made to the bumpers (which look fantastic), taking the figure to 4.21m from 4.18m. The other features, the height, the wheelbase and the width do remain unchanged. On the rear, the car hides its exhaust pipes under the diffuser and makes the design lines sharper and more prominent. It looks like the child of a rally car and an SUV, and pulls it off fantastically.
One of the best features of the new Q2, or any car with the quad-ring badging is the lights. While the standard LED lamps are available, the option of Matrix LED is provided to buyers. These are built specifically to compute the data and ensure that the light doesn’t hinder or blind oncoming traffic in most situations. Makes those late night coffee runs just a bit more relaxing, eh? The Matrix LED system uses about ten light-emitting diodes that sit behind rhomboid optical units, augmented by seven additional LEDs to signal turning lights. This system provides high beams of light all the while not blinding other drivers, brilliant figuratively and literally. As for the tail-lamps, the Matrix LED variant uses dynamic lights, with the addition of the lights flashing on the locking and unlocking of the car, you know so you do not fumble in the darkness and trip over your wrench kit in the garage or something. The Q2 does look out for you.
Let’s talk about safety because what car comes in India without asking about safety and mileage. So what does Audi offer in safety this time around? The Q2 incorporates the assist system from the full size class. In the standard version of the car, the pre sense system by Audi, uses radar to reduce the severity of an accident, or to avoid it altogether, and includes the lane departure feature. Now comes the real goodies. There are three optional packages that the company offers for the Q2: the Park, Safety and Drive packages. The Park assist offers a rear camera, combined with assistance in moving in and out of parking spaces automatically. The Safety package contains the side and the rear assist, the Audi pre sense basic and Audi pre sense systems. Normally, we’d say that Audi are hitting themselves in the foot by offering these packages individually, but consider the fact that this car is significantly cheaper than its cousins and you start to see sense in Audi’s decision.
The car’s optional equipment comes suited to customer needs: everything from climate control, comfort, function, interior or the assist system. And that’s what I think is what will get Audi their sales. They’re working to the needs of the customer rather than provide a single, homogeneous package. Someone not wanting the Parking gimmicks can simply not buy the variant and save a couple grand.
The interiors are done fairly well. Audi made the switches for the material used for the upholstery in the interior of the car. Maybe for cost-cutting or the heavy-usage in the Indian markets. The Dinamica microfiber material will replace Alcantara that was previously used. The rear seats, while not excessively spacious or luxurious, are just about comfortable and can fit 2 adults with maybe a 3rd child in the middle. Not exactly a people hauler.
The car uses two screens: a 12.3 inch diagonal and an MMI navigation plus 8.3 inch display. It is operated via a rotary pushbutton on the center console or through the means of a natural language voice control system. Modules such as the Audi phone box in two versions, like the charging function, clean up the hardware program quite nicely. The Bang & Olufsen Premium Sound System, which uses 14 loudspeakers with an output of about 705 watts, is rarely seen in the small SUV segment and is a great addition for audiophiles.
The 1.4 litre TFSI engine puts out a modest 187 horsepower and 320 Nm of torque, pushing through the 6-speed automatic, out to all 4 wheels, Quattro style. This powertrain proves to be absolutely no problem on the Indian roads.
So is it worth it? Or is it too much compromise? We don’t think so The Q2 is a decent competitor to the X1, the GLA and the XC40; and Audi hopes to see a significant increment in their sales in the Indian market with this Introduction!