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2012 Audi Q5

Overview
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2012 Audi Q5 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.9

The 2009 Audi Q5 was the German automaker's first compact SUV. Coming so late to the party, the Q5 hit the ground running, offering state-of-the-art multimedia and upscale amenities one would expect from a premium SUV. The 2012 Audi Q5 is an eye-catching 5-passenger SUV that takes its styling cues from its older sibling, the Q7. While it's not the ideal SUV for large families, the Q5's sophisticated design and nimble driving characteristics ensure its place as a top contender in the highly contested luxury SUV segment.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you seek a compact luxury SUV and striking exterior styling is your primary demand, look no further than the 2012 Audi Q5. The interior layout is simple, yet elegant. Navigating tight spots is an effortless task thanks to the Q5's compact dimensions and relatively tight turning radius.

You May Not Like This Car If...

While the 2012 Audi Q5 offers the best balance in the segment, you can easily find something sportier (BMW X3), softer (Lexus RX) or more affordable (Acura RDX) in the category.

What's New for 2012

For 2012, the V6 models add a sleek S line package with titanium-finished 20-inch 5-spoke wheels, matte black roof rails, and window frames. The top-of-the-line Q5 Prestige model offers new rear-window sunshades, perfect for keeping your rear-seat passengers comfortable in the summertime.

Driving the Q5

Driving Impressions A satisfying balance of ride comfort and dynamic handling has traditionally required compromises on both sides of the equation, but technology continues to rewrite the rules. While the BMW X3...

and Lexus RX 350 hold down the segment's extreme positions on the sport-comfort spectrum, respectively, the 2012 Audi Q5 offers a range of proficiency that approaches both ends. And that range is delivered by more than just the powertrain and suspension, but also by the outward visibility and ergonomics, and the "driving sensation" we consistently highlight when talking about European cars. The Q5 also adds a dose of customization to the driving experience when outfitted with its category-exclusive "Audi drive select" feature - highlighted in the Favorite Features section of this review.

Audi Drive Select
At the push of a button, Q5 drivers can adjust the engine, transmission and steering characteristics to satisfy their personal preferences. Modes include Comfort, Automatic, Dynamic and Individual, which allows a custom-tailored setting on navigation-equipped models.

Audi Dynamic Steering
In a tight parking lot, you want a lot of steering assist and response. When bombing down the autobahn, you want subtle directional changes and a calm steering response. With Audi dynamic steering, the 2012 Q5 has variable assist and variable ratio, delivering the best of both worlds. The system can even provide minor steering corrections in extreme situations, reducing the need for electronic stability program intervention.

2012 Audi Q5 Details
Interior

The 2012 Audi Q5's visually striking exterior is nearly eclipsed by its brilliant interior architecture. The layout is polished and classy, with precise construction and excellent fit and finish. The 12-way power front seats offer a host of configurations to accommodate an array of body types. The rear seats feature a versatile 40/20/40 split design and provide ample legroom and headroom. Audi is leading the way when it comes to innovative in-vehicle multimedia. The available feature-packed navigation system is controlled by Audi's intuitive MMI terminal and includes 3D building graphics, DVD player and two SD card slots.

Exterior

Although the compact luxury SUV segment offers a variety of stylish choices, the 2012 Audi Q5 is the clear winner when it comes to innovative design. In line with Audi's current design language, the Q5 features the distinctive Singleframe grille design, clean lines and of course, Audi's infamous LED daytime running lights. The Audi Q5's perfect height and large alloy wheels create a muscular stance once reserved for sports cars. We also like the Q5's sedan-like LED taillights and unique "clamshell" power liftgate.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Every 2012 Audi Q5 features plush leather seating, power front seats with 4-way lumbar support for those extended road trips, 3-zone climate control, multi-function steering wheel to help keep your eyes on the road, and a 10-speaker audio system with SiriusXM Satellite Radio. Standard safety equipment includes six airbags along with electronic stability control that adjusts for a higher center of gravity when it detects the roof-rack crossbars are in place.

Optional Equipment

From the base price of $36,475, the 2012 Audi Q5 offers around $17,000 worth of upgrades, highlights of which include xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights, a handy power liftgate with memory, panorama sunroof, Audi's third-generation MMI interface and navigation system, front and rear proximity sensors, backup camera, blind spot warning, 505-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system and a heated and cooled single cup holder. It seems odd to us that despite the Q5's mid-$30K base price, Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, heated seats, auto-dimming mirrors and iPod integration are not offered as standard equipment.

Under the Hood

The base Q5 is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine shared with partner Volkswagen. Paired with a new 8-speed manually selectable Tiptronic automatic transmission, the 2.0T offers 6-cylinder performance with 4-cylinder fuel economy. Thanks to its turbocharged application, the 2.0T pumps out an additional fifteen lb-ft of torque compared to the available V6. The Q5 3.2 features a 3.2-liter V6 engine, all-wheel drive and a manually-selectable Tiptronic 6-speed. Despite the 4-cylinder's superior torque figures, the 3.2-liter V6's additional 59 horsepower helps rocket the Q5 to 60 miles per hour in 6.7 seconds (about a half second faster than the 2.0T) and to an electronically-limited top speed of 130 mph. Like most of Audi's recent iterations of their quattro all-wheel-drive system, the Q5's features a 40/60 rear-biased torque split, which improves performance driving feel versus a 50/50 distribution. In case your interests are more specialized, the 2012 Audi Q5 3.2 boasts a segment-leading 4,400-pound towing capacity combined with a 440-pound tongue weight rating.

2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4
211 horsepower @ 4,300 rpm
258 lb-ft of torque @ 1,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/27 mpg

3.2-liter V6
270 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
243 lb-ft of torque @ 3,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/23 mpg

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2012 Audi Q5 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 69 Ratings for the 2009 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    8.9/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

Great vehicle, comfortable & smooth

By on Saturday, August 23, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 56,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Very nice, luxurious and comfortable. Handles really well, nice pick up, power and very smooth handling. All kinds of convenient bells and whistles. My wife and I were looking for a smaller SUV and stumbled upon this machine. We were impressed. It has been a great car for us."

A great SUV

By on Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "A joy to own and to drive"

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have owned this Q5 for a year and a half and am totally satisfied. It looks great, in and out, is very quiet and comfortable. A driver's car with all the space and power one looks for in a midsize SUV. And with the "Quattro" we feel very safe and confident, even in our Michigan winter weather."

The best car for was price paid

By on Saturday, August 16, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 31,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Worsted every penny, comfort and material quality"

Cons: "Cons for future new models - stop reducing weight"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Good, solid and safe car with high standard of materials, craftsmanship and equipment! True German assembling with family to family dynasty transferred "know how " secrets. Low price for brilliant car, very strong and safe."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

First time Audi buyer

By on Thursday, August 14, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Features and benefits"

Cons: "Oil consumption"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We shopped all options within this class and the Audi was the clear choice for us. They easily overcame our long held concerns about Audi safety, quality and value. Pros; Features and benefits that were a good fit. Very good performance characteristics and driving comfort for my wife and I. Cons; Oil consumption. However we were not surprised having owned a 5 series BMW. Best in it's class in our opinion."

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Cross between a sports sedan and crossover

By on Sunday, June 29, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 10,657

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "sport sedan in a crossover body"

Cons: "can't play radio with ignition off"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Smokes other cars (yes cars, not suvs!) on the freeway and at traffic stops, while performing like a more serious offroader in snow, sand and mud. Good ground clearance, even better fuel economy (20-21 mpg city, 28-30 mpg freeway). Handles potholes like a champ. Attacks hairpin curves at full speed, with very minimal body lean. Panorama sun roof opens all the way to the back, perfect for stargazing. Daytime running lights (LEDS) look wickedly menacing. Got mine in black. Only complaint is I cant play the radio with the engine off."

21 people out of 29 found this review helpful

Burns oil excessively for a car of this quality.

By on Thursday, May 22, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 32,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fun to drive and many conveniences."

Cons: "Burns oil a quart every 2-3,000 miles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"It uses synthetic oil for 10,000 mile intervals for change but burns oil every 2,000-3,000 mile a quart. A big negative for me for a german engineered car of this type."

12 people out of 19 found this review helpful

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