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The Audi Q5 Sportback is a coupe SUV that sports a sleek form without compromising on function.

14 Sep 2021


Times are a changin'. What was once a brawny, straightforward type of car, the SUV category seems to be rapidly populated by models that are meant to make a fashion statement. Case in point: The Audi Q5 Sportback.

Still, if you're questioning the point of the car, then you're clearly not the audience Audi is targeting, because there's just no logical reason for choosing a coupe SUV like the one you see here on this page. People choose a car like the Q5 Sportback simply because it's stylish, stylish and, yah, stylish. You can already tell by looking at the car's main rivals - the BMW X4 and the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class Coupe.

Staying ahead of the competition

The Q5 Sportback offers a decent 510 litres of boot space
But where the Audi differentiates itself from these two strong rivals is through a decently packaged car that manages to retain all the practicality of the standard Audi Q5.

Space wise, the Q5 Sportback does have a smaller 510-litre boot (the regular Q5 has 550 litres of hauling capacity) due to the tapered roofline, which is enough to get your attention, but just not significant enough to sway your buying decision. Good news is the Sportback here is 7mm longer and just 2mm shorter than the regular Q5. And both cars also have the same wheelbase of 2,819mm.

As a result, this coupe SUV doesn't lose out at all in terms of practicality. There's enough room to fit three adults at the back with sufficient room all around, there are plenty of premium features as you'd come to expect from a brand like Audi, and you still get a flawless cabin that's made up of high-quality materials and top-notch fit and finish.

Moving ahead with luxury and comfort

The 2.0-litre engine has 245bhp and 370Nm of torque
Best of all, the Sportback also retains the capable 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine and the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox from the regular model, which means you get ample pull and accurate shifts all the time, every time.

The full on 245bhp and 370Nm of torque are dispatched urgently yet smoothly to all four wheels with this Sportback. But during my four-day test drive with it, I barely drove it hard. It's not because the car isn't capable of getting rough and tough on the tarmac, it's just that the Q5 - Sportback or not - brought out a more matured side of me when I was behind the wheel.

If needed, the Q5 Sportback will finish the century sprint in 6.3 seconds
I mostly kept within my speed limit, stayed in the middle lane on the highways (except when I had to overtake) and kept my composure when another driver irritated me.

It's just how the Q5 Sportback makes you feel - often relaxed and composed. This has a lot to do with the car's carpet smooth ride regardless of the road and driving conditions. And with the lightly-weighted but accurate steering and quattro system, you can still throw the car around briskly without having to do much arm work. Everything about this car just shouts luxury and comfort, which is reasonable to say that the Audi isn't quite as engaging to drive as the BMW X4.

Thrusting ahead with a lasting design

It's a fierce-looking yet charming car, this one
However, expecting this car to be as enthusiastic as the BMW X4 or even the Porsche Macan is akin to expecting your three-year old daughter to solve the mathematics problem that's given to a seven-year old kid. It's just not going to happen.

What will happen, instead, is the Audi Q5 Sportback being one of the best-looking cars in its segment, at least in this pint-sized storyteller's eyes. With its instantly identifiable grille, LED headlamps with its signature daytime running lights and a tapered rear end that slants down nicely into a restyled rear with chrome bits, there's just no doubting the charming attraction of the car.

Driving ahead by staying current

Cabin is familiar Audi fanfare, with high-quality switchgear at the right places
Of course, the obvious argument from naysayers will be the lack of differentiation between this and the regular Q5, considering it's only the sloping roofline that gives this car the 'Sportback' moniker.

But why mess with a perfectly good formula? After all, the Q5 is the car that checks all the boxes it needs to as a family SUV and the Q5 Sportback should remain to be that same car, albeit with a styling that drives the brand ahead by staying competitive and current. That's to say ample space for the entire family, luxurious cabin that's sumptuously finished and a comfortable drive that's second to none.

So yes, times are a changin'. The SUV category may be rapidly populated by models that are meant to make a fashion statement, but at least the Audi Q5 Sportback isn't all form without function.

Car Information

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Audi Q5 Sportback Mild Hybrid 2.0 TFSI qu S tronic S line (A)
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Price

: $295,323

Engine Type

:

4-cylinder in-line 16-valve Turbocharged

Engine Cap

:

1984cc

Horsepower

:

183kW (245 bhp) / 6000 rpm

Torque

:

370 Nm / 4500 rpm

Transmission

:

7-speed (A) S tronic

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

6.3sec

Top Speed

:

237km/h

Fuel consumption

:

12.5 km/L

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