Fully kitted-up Audi only for the very successful
One of the great things about Audi’s small-hatch-cum-SUV, the Q2, is that it’s the most originallooking thing from the German maker for ages.
Another is that you can configure it pretty much any way you like. Mini might have led the way with the small-car personalisation movement, but Audi has really gone to town with the Q2 options list.
But there’s always opportunity cost, right? In this case it’s, well, cost.
The Q2 Sport starts at $54,500, which is a premium price but still just $5000 more than the A3 with the same powertrain – a car which seems extremely dull in comparison. But of course, the Q2’s whole selling proposition is personalisation so that $55k will be just the start for most buyers.
Admittedly, the media-car you see here is loaded up to show just what’s possible. But the price as tested (at least according to my spec sheet/calculator combo) is still breathtaking at $67,620.
That’s what happens when you decide you like the S-line model with special exterior styling, flatbottom steering wheel and LED interior lighting ($4500), the Technology Package of Virtual Cockpit instruments and sat-nav ($3500), Driver Assistance System Package with adaptive cruise, parking assistance, lane-keep and automatic high-beam lights ($3000), gloss black exterior detailing ($1250) privacy glass ($1200) and interior-trim light inlays ($750).
Well, at least that’s the stuff I could work out. There might be more. If you fancy leather as well you’ll easily tip the Q2 over into $70k territory.
Not everybody will go this far, but many people will – at least if the rival Mini brand is anything to go by. So you really do have to look at the Q2 as a premium small-SUV.
Mostly, it fits the bill. If there’s anything that errs on the side of house-brand with this car it’s the platform/powertrain, which is the same as you’ll find in any number of Volkswagen Group products.
It’s still good stuff and if anything, the Q2 drives a little better than the equivalent A3 thanks to better steering and a softer, but more progressive cornering stance. The dual-clutch S-tronic transmission (which is VW’s DSG in all but name) is as snappy as ever, albeit with the occasional hesitation in low-speed city work.
But in look and feel the Q2 is special enough to carry that premium price. The exterior styling is intriguing and the interior reeks of German quality. Audi isn’t quite as over-the-top with its interior materials as it used to be, but the Q2 has as much touchy-feely stuff inside as the larger, more expensive A4.
And some of those options are pretty cool. The Virtual Cockpit gives you a digital instrument panel that can be configured in different views, including one that minimises the traditional stuff (speed/revs) and allocates the majority of the display area to the sat-nav map. Love it.
You don’t have to spend the really big bucks, of course. Opt for a showroom-standard Q2 and you still get the cheerful performance and high-quality cabin. But such a car will probably be a very rare sight.
Fully dressed-up Q2 looks pretty striking. But then it can also be very expensive: this one is nudging $70k.