By Shereen Shabnam
The new all rounder Audi Q2 is perfect for both city drives and off-road adventure as we find out during an action packed junket in the outskirts of Manama city in Bahrain. We fall in love with the model’s vibrant colours, angular styling, the state of the art technology and the mystery the car projects as it surprises us with its energy and confidence at every turn.
The first part of the car that impressed me was the large luggage compartment which has ample space for shopping, gym and sports accessories and of course shoes. The compact SUV’s low roofline and high window line gives the sporty car a coupe-like look with striking wedge-shaped headlights.
Inside, the all-round visibility is impressive technologies from the full-size class. The driver can use the optional touchpad to scroll through a clearly structured menu, while passengers can surf and stream with smart-phones, tablets and other mobile devices via a Wi-Fi hotspot. The MMI screen is positioned high on the instrument panel as standard.
The driver assistance systems for the Q2 come from the full-size class. Safety is addressed with the standard emergency braking assistant and the car can autonomously maintain a distance to the vehicle ahead, monitor the blind spot and assist in lane keeping. Audi pre sense front uses radar to recognize hazardous situations that can occur with crossing pedestrians or other vehicles in front of the car. The system warns the driver and initiates hard braking if necessary, down to a standstill at low speeds.
The driver gets additional support from the latest-generation park assist.
It can manoeuvre the compact SUV into parallel and perpendicular parking spaces. Cross traffic assist rear comes into play when the driver wants to reverse out of a perpendicular parking spot. It monitors the traffic behind the car with its radar sensors.
Audi offers a selection of three engines for the Q2: three TFSI whose power outputs range from 116 hp to 190 hp. The engine program follows the principle of rightsizing. This is about striking the perfect balance between vehicle class, engine displacement, power output, torque and efficiency behaviour in everyday conditions. Engine displacements for the new Audi Q2 are 1.0, 1.4 and 2.0 liters.
The top gasoline engine enables the four-cylinder to realize the fuel economy benefits of a downsizing engine in part-load operation, while offering the benefits of an engine with large displacement at higher loads. This results in excellent efficiency and power behavior over the entire engine speed range.
The 2.0 TFSI come standard with quattro permanent all-wheel drive. The hydraulic multi-plate clutch with its electronic control transfers torque nearly entirely to the front wheels in normal driving, but it can redirect torque in a 50:50 ratio to the rear axle.
This is how the quattro drive unites driving pleasure and driving safety, taking them to a new level. Wheel-selective torque control, an intelligent sub-function of the Electronic Stabilization Control (ESC), rounds out the quattro range of functions. The optional Audi drive select handling system lets the driver select between five modes: auto, comfort, dynamic, efficiency and individual. It influences a variety of vehicle systems, including the steering and gear shift characteristics as well as the optional suspension with adaptive damper control.
Customers also have many ways to express their personal style in the elaborately crafted interior. Colors like yellow, orange and red may be selected for inlays, sections of the seats and contrasting stitching. Inlays are also available in white plastic or brushed aluminum.
Seat upholstery choices range from high-end fabrics to fine Nappa leather. At night, the optional LED lighting package makes the interior especially attractive. In the top version, LED light guides illuminate the sculpted inlays at the front of the instrument panel and the center console with homogeneous light.