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Driven: Audi powers up Q2 2.0 TFSI quattro

Fast Q: The Q2 2.0 TFSI quattro can complete the 0-100km/h dash in 6.5 seconds.

$48,500 plus ORCs the ticket to Q2 2.0 TFSI quattro flagship


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16 Nov 2017

AUDI Australia has boosted equipment in its Q2 range to coincide with the arrival of a powered-up 2.0 TFSI quattro model grade, with both measures aimed at taking further advantage of the car-maker’s significant momentum in the small SUV segment.

While the 2.0 TFSI quattro slots into the range at $48,500 plus on-road costs, Audi has increased pricing of the existing 1.4 TFSI and 2.0 TDI quattro by $700 and $1200 respectively, to $41,800 and $49,100.

Compensating for the price hike, LED headlights and tail-lights with sequential indicators – previously a $2100 option – have become standard for the first time since the Q2 launched in February 2017.

Audi Australia product planning executive Lisa Heyne said the addition was based on a high take-up rate of the option since the Q2 arrived in showrooms.

Of the Q2 2.0 TFSI quattro’s arrival, Ms Heyne added that “we’re expecting it to have quite a big share, so I’d expect it to be at least a 30 per cent sales mix”.

Sales of the 1.4 TFSI and 2.0 TDI quattro have been split 70:30 since launch, and although Ms Heyne would not comment on how these would be affected by the arrival of the 2.0 TFSI quattro, she confirmed that “it will take some share of the 1.4 TFSI and the 2.0 TDI”.

Incremental growth will be the target with the now-three-tier Q2 range, with mS Heyne declining to nominate the extent of stand-alone sales growth the addition of the 2.0 TFSI quattro could bring to the range.

She said it was important to recognise that the Q2 has not cannibalised sales of the older Q3, given the new Audi small SUV lobbed into the same class this year.

“It (Q2) has performed really well, it’s roughly 400 units of Q2 and Q3 in that segment per month,” Ms Heyne said.

“There has been no cannibalisation or whatever, Q3 is still doing well this far into its lifecycle, it’s doing the number we wished it would do.”

According to VFACTS, sales of the Q3 to October 2017 have sunk by 20.8 per cent to 2518 units year-to-date – or 493 sales behind the same period last year.

However, as a new nameplate, the addition of the Q2 has this year added 1567 sales, or three times the number of sales lost by the older of the Audi SUV duo.

Audi Australia marketing and communications director Anna Burgdorf called the small SUV pair a win for the brand.

“I think the most important thing for us is that, combined, as a small SUV for the Audi range, they are incredibly strong,” Ms Burgdorf said.

“(We) really offer a good choice for Q2 or Q3 buyers and I think most importantly for us, as long as they stay with the Audi brand, whether they choose a Q2 or a Q3 is not so much the point.

“The Q2 has really taken its place in the range as a well-established small SUV for Audi, and … now with the arrival of this new more dynamic engine, with quattro four-wheel drive, it sits at the very stop of the Q2 range and we do see great opportunity to keep the momentum building in small SUVs.

“Of course the SUV market continues to grow in Australia, but also around the world. So that’s certainly something that I think is important for a car like the Q2, that it’s coming into quite a healthy market segment.”

With two months of the sales calendar remaining, volume in the $40K-plus small SUV segment has increased by 4.7 per cent to 10,973 sales year-to-date or only 1.1 per cent of the total market. However, with only six entrants in the class, the Q2 has this year nabbed a 14.3 per cent share, adding to the Q3’s 22.9 per cent.

The BMW X1 (3259 sales, down 5.8 per cent but with a 29.7 per cent segment share) leads the class, followed by the Mercedes-Benz GLA (2769 units, down 16.2 per cent with a 25.2 per cent). However, even the addition of the Mini Countryman (663 sales, up 48.3 per cent but with a 6.0 per cent share) to the BMW Group’s tally fails to match the Audi pair’s combined 37.2 per cent share.

Powered by a 2.0-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder, it makes 140kW of power from 4200rpm until 6000rpm, and 320Nm of torque between 1500rpm and 4200rpm.

Audi has claimed a 6.5-second 0-100km/h performance time for the seven-speed dual-clutch-equipped model grade, which is 1.6s faster than the 2.0 TDI quattro.

However, with claimed combined-cycle fuel consumption of 6.5 litres per 100 kilometres, the flagship petrol cedes 1.5L/100km to that diesel.

With a kerb weight of 1430kg, the multi-link independent rear suspension-kitted 2.0 TFSI quattro is 150kg heavier than the front-wheel drive 1.4 TFSI, which uses a simpler torsion beam rear suspension set-up.

Audi labelled the $46,500 Mini Countryman S as the nearest rival to the Q2 2.0 TFSI quattro. With an extra 1kW but minus 40Nm of torque from its 2.0-litre turbo, the Mini has a 0.9s-slower 0-100km/h and identical fuel usage.

However, despite being $2000 cheaper, the Countryman S adds auto up/down high-beam, front and parking sensors with automatic park assistance, keyless auto-entry, and active cruise control, all of which Audi has made optional.

Otherwise, standard equipment includes 18-inch alloy wheels, an electric tail-gate, leather-appointed seat trim, a 7.0-inch colour screen with satellite navigation, dual-zone climate control air-conditioning, cruise control, rear parking sensors and rearview camera, plus a blind-spot monitor and autonomous emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection.

Audi has seen a 70 per cent take-up rate of its $990 Driver Assistance Package, which adds adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning with lane-keep assistance, auto up/down high-beam and hill-hold technology.

Around 40 per cent of buyers select the $2500 Technik Package, which incorporates a larger 8.0-inch screen, flat-bottomed steering wheel and a colour driver display dubbed Audi Virtual Cockpit.

Also available is a $1900 Comfort package with keyless auto-entry, front seat heating with electrically adjustable lumbar support and heated exterior mirrors, while a $1500 S line package incorporates sports suspension, leather/Alcantara trim, perforated leather gearknob, aluminium inlays and black headlining.

Other stand-alone options include a $1950 panoramic sunroof, $1050 head-up display, $550 digital radio and $500 10-speaker audio system.

2017 Audi Q2 pricing*
1.4 TFSI (a)$41,800
2.0 TFSI quattro (a)$48,500
2.0 TDI quattro (a)$49,100
*Excludes on-road costs

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