Audi Q2 Driving, Engines & Performance | Top Gear
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BBC TopGear
Car Review

Audi Q2

£ 22,495 - £ 43,185
510
Published: 14 Dec 2020
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Driving

What is it like to drive?

We are enthusiasts. And reading Top Gear, we hope you are too. In which case the Audi Q2 would appear not to be for The Likes of Us. It drives exactly as well as it needs to, and no more. When the VW Group launched the platform it’s based upon, the cars upon it all felt sharp and keen; Golfs, Leons and A3s suddenly handled with a newfound flair. We were happy.

With the Q2, there's very little to get your teeth into. The control weights are consistently lacking in any feel and the ride, if you spec an S-line car with 18- or 19-inch wheels, is truly shoddy. You could argue that Audi buyers don't care about how the car handles, or how uncomfortable massive wheels make it, because of the badge, and there's likely some truth to that. But the Q2 is a classic case of a car feeling less premium than it could, because it's not been set up with much care. A Ford Puma drives like a much more expensive-feeling bit of kit, for instance, because it doesn't tramp along like the tyres have been rough-cut from old breeze blocks. 

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Of course, this is the small crossover way,. With a handful of exceptions (Ford Puma, Mazda CX-3, Hyundai Kona) these things are usually pretty dowdy. Taller and more top-heavy than the hatchbacks they’re based upon –  and usually possessing engines tuned for low emissions, not high excitement – it’s rare they do anything out of the ordinary. Which for the bulk of car buyers, is probably about right.

It’s just a shame the Q2 doesn’t demonstrate as much verve dynamically as it does aesthetically, or pull off the Q5's trick of being much more refined and relaxed than you expect. Because it needs to hit a low price point, it's saddled with a cheapo torsion beam rear axle, and frankly, you can tell it's got Dacia-spec suspension from the first few yards.

Our pick of the engines in the Q2 was the 1.0-litre tri-cylinder turbo, because it was perky when prodded but otherwise docile. While that's AWOL, you've got a choice of one, and while the 1.5-litre four-pot is serviceable, it's nowhere near as pleasant to use as Ford's hybridified Puma powerplants, nor the chirpy triples Citroen and Peugeot slot into their crossovers. The 7spd gearbox makes the best of it, but this is not an engine that reeks of expensive German engineering. 

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Highlights from the range

the fastest

Audi Q2 SQ2 Quattro 5dr S Tronic
  • 0-624.9s
  • CO2
  • BHP300
  • MPG
  • Price£ 38,925

the cheapest

Audi Q2 30 TDI Technik 5dr
  • 0-629.9s
  • CO2
  • BHP116
  • MPG
  • Price£ 26,905
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