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What did Edmunds have to say about the new 2021 Audi Q5?

What is the Q5?

The Audi Q5 is one of our favorite small luxury SUVs thanks to its quiet interior, smooth power delivery and impeccable cabin materials. For 2021, Audi is tweaking the Q5 in small but ultimately significant ways to keep interest in its strongest-selling crossover from waning. Most noticeably, the refresh brings new headlight and taillight designs, plus sharper styling to the front and rear. The engine gets a slight power increase and a 12-volt mild hybrid system, which Audi says translates to reduced fuel consumption. On the inside, a new infotainment system debuts, and some features that were previously optional are now standard.

What's under the Q5's hood?

The standard Audi Q5 is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. For 2021, power output is increased to 261 horsepower (an improvement of 13 hp) and 273 lb-ft of torque. Efficiency is also improved due to a new 12-volt mild hybrid system, but we expect fuel economy gains to be marginal in real-world driving. Unlike other hybrids, the electric motor does not contribute to overall power output in the Q5. Rather, it should make the automatic stop-start system work more quickly and smoother.


The V6 in the performance-minded SQ5 remains the same at 349 horsepower, while the four-cylinder plug-in hybrid that was introduced last year increases from 349 hp to 362 hp. The seven-speed automated dual-clutch transmission returns (the SQ5 gets eight speeds), as does Audi's standard Quattro all-wheel-drive.

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How's the Q5's interior?

Other than a larger infotainment system (more on that later), changes to the 2021 Audi Q5's cabin are subtle indeed. The seats now feature contrast-color stitching, and some of the matte-black trim accents are now glossy. Otherwise, the 2021 Q5 exhibits the same everyday practicality that garnered accolades for the previous model. The simple, approachable design will win over technophobes and gadget acolytes alike.

How's the Q5's tech?

The Q5's infotainment offerings have always been quite intuitive, but changes for the 2021 model make the primary system even more user-friendly. A new 10.1-inch touchscreen is standard and features a customizable menu screen. Much like BMW's iDrive system, you can select between several often-used control tiles to display, and wireless Apple CarPlay is now included. The dial controller is gone, but voice commands have been enhanced for greater control and better natural speech detection. Over-the-air updates will keep the system fresh, while additional features such as a red-light countdown timer and a parking spot finder can make your life easier.

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Edmunds says

We've always enjoyed the Audi Q5's high levels of comfort, standard all-wheel drive, and an abundance of tech features. While the new additions might not solve the Audi's cargo space deficiencies, they do enhance the Q5's existing strengths. Though we haven't rated it yet, we expect the 2021 Audi Q5 will continue to be one of the best choices in the compact SUV class.

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