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2016 Audi SQ5 Review
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By: On: 09-11-2015 Model(s): For 2016, the Audi SQ5 is unchanged aside from a few new options, including red brake calipers and diamond-stitched upholstery. 2016 Audi SQ5
Author Experience: Expert review

For 2016, the Audi SQ5 is unchanged aside from a few new options, including red brake calipers and diamond-stitched upholstery.

Compact luxury crossovers are exploding in popularity, but if you want a high-performance version, there are still only a few options. Standing tall among them is the 2016 Audi SQ5. Although this hopped-up model utilizes the same basic supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine as the mainstream Q5 3.0T, it boasts about 30 percent more horsepower. The SQ5 also gains sportier suspension tuning, stronger brakes, subtle exterior styling enhancements and cool interior touches like sport seats, gray-faced gauges and newly available diamond-stitched leather surfaces.

Beyond that, you're largely looking at the same pros and cons as the regular Q5. The rear seat is pretty roomy as compact crossovers go, but maximum cargo capacity is less than the compact-crossover norm. Also, the SQ5's technology offerings, just like the Q5's, are a bit behind the curve. Bluetooth audio, for example, isn't standard on the base Premium Plus trim. Moreover, while Audi has started to add USB connectivity to its newer models, the aging Q5 family makes do with the company's old proprietary music interface, which just isn't as versatile.

If you want slightly superior performance and technology that's fully up to date, the Porsche Macan checks both boxes, though its humble cargo capacity makes the SQ5 seem commodious. Another option would be the BMW X3 in xDrive35i trim fitted with the vehicle's optional Dynamic Handling package. So equipped, it delivers engaging dynamics and more cargo space but marginally less straight-line speed. Among the three choices here, the 2016 Audi SQ5 remains arguably the best all-around choice in this high-performance niche.

The 2016 Audi SQ5 is a compact luxury crossover offered in two trim levels: Premium Plus and Prestige.

Standard equipment on the Premium Plus includes 20-inch alloy wheels with summer tires, high-performance brakes, a sport-tuned suspension, automatic xenon headlights with washers, LED running lights and taillights, S-specific body trim (including the signature metal-look mirror housings), aluminum roof rails, heated/auto-dimming/power-folding mirrors, rain-sensing wipers, a panoramic sunroof, a rear roof spoiler, a power liftgate and quad exhaust tips.

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