First drive: Audi Q5 - On the road

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The Q5 will initially be available with three engines and one (SE) trim, although there'll be more along sooner rather than later.

Two of the engines are new - a 208bhp version of the VW Group's 2.0-litre turbo engine, badged TFSI, and a 168bhp 2.0-litre turbodiesel (TDI). There's also an updated 3.0-litre V6 diesel, with 236bhp.

The petrol engine and V6 diesel have a new seven-speed twin-clutch semi-automatic (S-tronic) gearbox while the other diesel has a six-speed manual. All rely on quattro permanent four-wheel drive.

Gearshifts on the move are quick and smooth, but take-off from standstill is not without its little dramas. At first the car doesn't seem to realise you want to get going: then it lurches forward as if in apology.

It's the same if you rely on the fully-automatic mode. At least the manual in the 2.0-litre diesel is viceless.

Which one should you choose?
Both 2.0-litre engines are absolute gems. They deliver an identical amount of pull, 259lb ft, from less than 2000rpm, so they're supremely flexible as well as strong.

That enables them to cope with long gearing, contributing towards their impressive economy.

The initial temptation is to go for the pleasantly raspy petrol unit, but then you feel the smoothness and hear the most un-diesel-like snort of the TDI and it becomes difficult to make your mind up.

It will all depend on which works best for you financially.

First drive: Audi Q5 - Tricks and technology


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