Audi hints at Q5 4x4's looks

13 November 2007

These images give the first clues to how Audi's Q5 4x4 will look when it goes on sale in 2008 - and could also be previewing a soft top 4x4 that will make production.

Unveiled at today's Los Angeles motor show, the Cross Cabriolet concept car shows how Audi's Q5, a BMW X3 and Land Rover Freelander rival, will look.

Based on the new Audi A4 and A5 platform, the Cross Cabriolet is powered by a 3.0-litre V6 diesel that Audi says is the cleanest diesel in the world.

It injects an additive to break down harmful nitrogen oxide gases (NOx) to levels that meet Euro VI emission targets, which come into force in 2014.

However, Audi plans to put the technology into production next year and use it in its entire diesel model range. Initially, it is expected to go on sale in North America only.

It has 240bhp and 396 lb ft of pulling power, giving the Cross Cabriolet a 0-62mph time of 7.2sec and an average fuel economy of 39mpg.

The engine drives through an eight-speed automatic gearbox, which also has a semi-automatic option, with permanent four-wheel drive.

The Cross Cabriolet also has an adjustable ride height, which is driven by electric motors and allows the driver to adjust the car by 40mm in four seconds, suggesting that the Q5 will have some off-road abilities.

While the Q5 will go on sale in the UK in September 2008, the soft top model based closely on this concept car is tipped to go into production in the next two to three years.

Audi says the folding roof stows in 17 seconds, while features such as roll bars that emerge from behind the rear seats when the on-board computer senses an accident and a four-way intercom system may also make production.

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