The SQ5 is powered by a 3.0-liter TFSI V6 engine that it shares with the potent S4 sport sedan. The mill sends 354 horsepower and 346 lb-ft. of torque to all four wheels via an eight-speed tiptronic transmission and the latest generation of Audi's famed quattro all-wheel drive system.
Not your average family-hauler, the crossover sprints from zero to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds and reaches a top speed that is electronically limited to 155 mph.
The TFSI's supercharger is mounted in between the cylinder banks and spun by a crankshaft-driven belt to almost 20,000 rpms. Two intercoolers keep the temperature in check even under the most extreme conditions.
Torque vectoring, a sport-tuned suspension and upgraded brakes on all four corners help the 4,400-pound SQ5 provide the driver with a fun and sure-footed driving experience.
Looking The Part
The SQ5's Q5 roots are instantly recognizable but the super SUV gains a specific radiator grille adorned by brushed aluminum trim and an aggressive body kit all around that consists of large air intakes integrated into the front bumper, side skirts and a discreet spoiler mounted on top of the hatch.
20-inch alloy wheels wrapped by low-profile tires and V6T badges on the fenders finish off the upmarket look.
Inside, the SQ5 offers a three-spoke multi-function flat-bottomed steering wheel, a bespoke instrument cluster with white needles, pedals with aluminum inserts, shift paddles and leather upholstery. Like the regular Q5, it boasts 29.1 cubic feet of trunk space with the rear seats up and 57.3 with the seats folded flat.
The SQ5 is available with a seven inch color touch screen that lets passengers control the Audi's MMI infotainment system. The software can be ordered with Audi Connect, an optional feature that brings in-car internet connectivity and industry-first Google Earth integration - complete with panoramic views and high-resolution 3D satellite and aerial imagery.
Standard and Optional Equipment
The SQ5 is offered in two trim levels called Premium Plus and Prestige, respectively.
Premium Plus models come equipped with automatic xenon headlights, LED tail lamps, power-folding, dynamic steering, auto-dimming and heated door mirrors, a power tailgate, aluminum roof rails, a S exterior package that includes side skirts and a spoiler, three-zone climate control, a panoramic sunroof, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror, heated front seats, a 12-way adjustable driver's seat, leather and Alcantara upholstery, a HomeLink transceiver, rain-sensing wipers, keyless entry and start, a ten-speaker sound system, Bluetooth connectivity and cruise control.
Stepping up to the Prestige trim adds adaptive headlights, a thermo cup holder, rear sunshades, MMI navigation with voice commands, a 505-watt 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system, a color driver information screen, Bluetooth audio streaming, a rear-view camera and parking sensors on both ends.
Buyers can choose from several option packages including the High Bloss Black package, which adds matt black roof rails, high gloss black trim all around and body-colored door mirrors. The Luxury package brings ventilated front seats and Milano leather upholstery.
Finally, Premium Plus buyers can choose the Technology package, which essentially bundles all of the Prestige's tech features including Audi side assist, MMI navigation plus, Audi connect, HD Radio, voice control, a DVD player, a rear-view camera and parking sensors on both ends.
Standard safety features include dual front, front side and full-length side curtain airbags as well as traction and stability control systems and a tire-pressure monitoring system.
Rear side airbags and blind spot monitors are available at an extra cost.
The Audi SQ5 is a bit of an odd-duck in the United States, but buyers in the market for a crossover with sports-car like acceleration should also look at the more expensive Land Rover Range Rover Sport.