2018 Audi SQ5

In the recent Detroit Auto Show, Audi was all about introducing
new crossovers. Along the gigantic Q8, Audi also debuted the
second generation of the SQ5. The 2018 Audi SQ5 is the
automaker’s performance-oriented mid-size crossover. The new
model features a new engine, which translates to a faster and
better handling model. Read along for more information:

2018 Audi SQ5 Exterior

To set the model apart from the regular Q5, Audi hooked up the
SQ5 with an array of features synonymous with its other
S-badged models. To start with, the front features a single
frame grille with a Platinum Gray trim as opposed to a chrome
trim as is the case with the Q5. The grille’s horizontal slats
are finished in a dark paint. Its vertical bars almost look
invisible. The new changes make the front fascia look sportier.
The bumper is also slightly different.

The sides feature just two major changes. The first change is
the silver upper mirror caps rather than body-colored units on
regular models.  The second new feature is the new
twin-five-spoke set of sport wheels.

At the rear, the tailgate and roof spoiler, as well as the
taillights, are unchanged. The only changes are a slight
revision of the lower bumper and addition of bigger exhaust
pipes.

Although they are only a few, the new changes have managed to
make the model stand out from the regular 2018 Audi Q5.

2018 Audi SQ5 Interior

The SQ5 cabin styling is inspired by that of the regular Q5,
which recently underwent an interior overhaul for the second
generation.  Like the Q5, the SQ5 will have a cleaner
center stack, which among other features comes with a revised
infotainment system that has a free-standing display placed on
the dash. The instrument cluster has a new, huge display. The
model also has a flat-bottomed steering wheel.

Front sports seats are now standard. The leather wrapped seats
have a diamond stitching. The model also features a new matte
and brushed aluminum inlay as standard but buyers can opt for
carbon fiber elements. It also comes with stainless steel
doorsills with an “S” badge.

Tech-wise, The SQ5 features the MMI Touch that supports
handwriting recognition technology. The model also features the
automaker’s Virtual cockpit. Its Smartphone interface features
both Google Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. 4G LTE and Google
Earth images are also featured. Audi also offers a sport
display mode that places the speedometer and the tachometer at
the front, center of the display. It also features a boost
gauge as well as a lap timer, features that come in handy when
you take the crossover racing on the tracks.

Engine Specs and performance

The SQ5 has a new engine under its hood. While the outgoing
model had a supercharged unit, the new model comes with a
turbocharged mill.  However, the new engine is still a V-6
and has a displacement of 3.0 liters. The new TFSI engine
produces 354 hp at 6000 rpm just like the outgoing engine but
it adds 23 lb-ft of torque to 369 lb-ft of torque from 1370
rpm. The engine is mated to an 8-speed Tiptronic automatic
transmission along with Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive system.

This enables the SQ5 to accelerate from 0-60 mph in 5.1 seconds
and can reach a top speed of 150 mph, which is not bad at all
for a crossover.

An optional S sport package gets you a sports rear differential
that actively splits torque between the rear wheels with the
capability of channeling almost all torque to a single wheel.
There are also more upgrades on its suspension such as addition
of front five-link suspension that has a lightweight
construction to increase steering precision and improve
handling. A sport adaptive air suspension is optional. This
suspension lowers the model’s height by 1.18 inches and allows
for ride height and firmness of the dampers adjustment. It is
controlled through the Audi drive select.

Price and release date

It is a bit early to expect Audi to reveal official prices of
the 2018 Audi SQ5. However, I don’t expect the model to attract
a heftier price tag than the outgoing model. The base SQ5
Premium has a starting price of $53,300. Most likely the new
model will have a starting price of $54,000, around $14,000
more than the starting price of the Audi Q5 on which it is
based. The Prestige trim will fetch around $61,000. Extra
options will further increase the price

Competition

Top rivals of the 2018 Audi SQ5 will be the likes of BMW X4 M40,
Porsche
Macan GTS as well as the Mercedes-AMG GLC43.