The 2018 Paris Motor Show served to unveil a very special variant within the range of the small crossover presented by Audi two years ago. The Q2 thus received its corresponding sports version accompanied by that letter ‘S’ in charge of distinguishing a series of aspirational models that do not reach the levels of their RS brothers, but that are more than enough to offer strong sensations at the wheel. The recipe was the same as on other occasions: an eye-catching aesthetic, an interior with differential touches, four-wheel drive, automatic gearbox and a vigorous turbocharged engine.
Slight cosmetic changes
With these ingredients, the Audi SQ2 managed to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.8 seconds and its top speed was limited to 250 km/h. Those figures have remained unchanged with the restyling introduced by the brand at the end of 2020, but not the aesthetic and technological section of the small SUV. As usual in this type of mid-cycle commercial updates, the changes affect the bumpers, a redesigned grille as well as some side skirts, rear-view mirror housings and a spoiler that change their design, without forgetting some wheels of New 19 inches, headlights with LED technology and an extended range of external colors. All this with the aim of offering a refreshed image that manages to give a commercial boost to the most performing Q2 on the market.
Its interior is led by the dark tones and good quality materials that accompany the Audi S versions, as well as red details and seams providing a certain touch of sportiness. The seats are quite comfortable and offer more than enough lateral support to keep us in place when facing curves, with more space than expected for the legs in both the front and rear seats. Audi has introduced its 12.3-inch digital instrument panel, which is accompanied by specific graphics visible when the ignition is switched on, while the multimedia system screen remains unchanged. As for the trunk, it has a capacity of 355 liters., expandable up to 1,000 liters if the rear seats are folded down, it has a generous loading opening and a very interesting net that limits the movement of stored objects.
The most effective Q2 of the family
Having had the fantastic opportunity to try out the entire Audi RS family both on the track and on the street recently, the next contact with this range of performance vehicles was with the smallest member of the lineage, an Audi SQ2 that since first moment tries to draw a smile on your face thanks to its attributes . It is not an RS, so we are not dealing with a radical model, but that does not mean that it is without fun since it boasts an outstanding chassis that even lets us play with the rear axle in dynamic driving mode, as long as the floor is somewhat slippery, since otherwise it will cling to the asphalt with great integrity.
Its front axle does not feel more willful than that of a standard Q2 when entering the curves, but that is not a problem since it allows you to face the turns with great determination thanks, in part, to an extremely fast direction that boasts of only two turns of steering wheel between stops . This means that you do not have to move your hands from their initial position to face most of the curves, as this system ensures that the greater the degree of rotation of the steering wheel, the more direct the steering. This also has the opposite effect and that is that, if we make small movements when driving on highways at high speeds, we will notice how the car becomes very calm since in these circumstances the direction is much less direct.
That said, the SQ2 feels much more effective than other versions of Audi’s small SUV when it comes to tackling fast corners, and that’s down to the S sport suspension fitted as standard.. It has firmer shock absorbers and springs, as well as a body lowered by 20 millimeters, so that the vehicle’s center of gravity is closer to the asphalt. With its presence we notice how the car gains in firmness, although this cannot be altered since we are not talking about an adaptive system, a peculiarity that may not be to everyone’s taste. In sports driving, one more point of hardness is missing so that the movements of the bodywork are better contained, while in urban environments it could be somewhat softer in order to absorb potholes with a higher degree of comfort. Audi has sought a balanced suspension that manages to pass with a remarkable high in all the tests, although it does not reach the outstanding.
The EA888 engine from the Volkswagen Group is always a guarantee of success . Here it develops 300 horsepower and a maximum torque of 400 Nm, more than enough figures to move with great ease a SQ2 that covers the maneuver from 0 to 100 in just 4.9 seconds. The thrust from 2,500 rpm is very intense and does not drop until you reach the red zone of the rev counter, so in the blink of an eye you will have reached a truly high pace. If we have to put a snag, that’s the soundtrack. While it is true that from the outside the four exhaust outlets emanate a rather suggestive melody in the aforementioned dynamic driving mode, particularly when you lift your foot off the accelerator, from the inside you can barely feel all those CV from the 2.0-liter turbo engine.
This block is associated with a seven-speed S tronic automatic gearbox, which reads the situation quite correctly when we practice sporty driving , although a purely manual mode is missing that allows us to stay in the chosen gear without the system changes to a higher one when we reach the red zone of the rev counter. It is a transmission that transitions from one gear to another quickly, relying on paddles behind the steering wheel that are quite small but pleasant to handle. Its best ally is the brand’s well-known quattro drive system, which is synonymous with brilliant traction. The SQ2 does not have the torque splitter system that is present in theAudi RS 3, so that it cannot distribute the torque independently between the rear wheels. Instead, it applies a certain amount of braking on the inside wheel when turning, a solution that improves agility and limits understeer, but with which you can get to saturate the brakes in sporty driving .
And speaking of these, the feel offered by the pedal has seemed fantastic. The German SUV uses ventilated brake discs on both axles, 340 millimeters in diameter at the front and 310 mm at the rear. From the first moment, they offer a response that is up to the task, inducing a large dose of confidence in the driver, since he can regulate the braking force that he wishes to apply with a very high degree of precision, since the pedal is modulated much more by pressure than by displacement.
About 10 liters
Finally, it’s time to talk about fuel consumption. The four-cylinder engine and all-wheel drive should move a total of 1,610 kilos, which is a pretty respectable figure for a vehicle of its size. That is why the Audi SQ2 homologates 8.3 liters per 100 kilometers, an average that can be achieved perfectly as long as we drive at a smooth pace being cautious with the accelerator. If it rolls normally and giving the whole some other joy, the average cost will be around 9.5 l/100 km .
Those who are interested in acquiring this car should hurry as its commercial life has an expiration date , as confirmed by the CEO of Audi earlier this year. There will be no second generation Q2, nor will there be a replacement for the A1. The smaller segments are no longer of interest to the Ingolstadt house as all efforts will be focused on reinforcing higher categories, which are more profitable. This means that next year we will have to say goodbye to the Audi SQ2, a crossover that stands out for the tuning of its chassis, its high traction, acceleration capacity and a very attractive design that we can already begin to forget. There is still time to know his ways, yes, it will be necessary to pay the 55,970 euros that the brand asks for him.