Exceptional sports car: Audi gives the SQ2 an even sharper design
Since its debut two years ago, the SQ2 has made a name for itself as a car full of character. It is a dynamic compact SUV for individualists who value standalone design, a high utility value, and dynamic handling. The key figures speak for themselves: 0 to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in 4.9 seconds, top speed of 250 km/h (155.3 mph), and an average fuel consumption of just 7.7 liters per 100 km (30.5 US mpg).
The 2.0 TFSI draws its power from 1,984 cm3 of displacement and is a sporty all-around engine. It is installed in many Audi models – in the SQ2, it delivers 221 kW (300 PS) and a constant 400 Nm (295.0 lb-ft) of torque across a broad range of between 2,000 and 5,300 rpm. The turbocharged four-cylinder has an excellent throttle response, and its sound becomes fuller as the speed increases. This is due in part to the flaps in the exhaust system.
The 2.0 TFSI has some progressive technologies for power and efficiency on board. The Audi valvelift system (AVS) switches the stroke of the outlet valves between two levels as needed, thereby optimizing the charge cycle in the lower engine speed range in particular: The improved flow of exhaust gas to the turbocharger results in an agile response and powerful torque build-up. Sophisticated thermal management controls the coolant flow, and the exhaust manifold integrated in the cylinder head helps the engine to warm up quickly, which allows exhaust gas aftertreatment to be activated early on. Needless to say, the Audi SQ2 complies with the limits of the new Euro 6 AP emission standard.
The seven-speed S tronic is standard in the Q2 top model. Its lower gears feature short, sporty ratios while the seventh gear is long to reduce fuel consumption. Drivers can operate the lightning-fast dual-clutch transmission in modes D or S, or shift themselves. If the Audi drive select system is in “efficiency” mode, the clutch disengages when coasting, allowing the compact sport SUV to freewheel.
The quattro all-wheel drive provides the updated Audi SQ2 with the crucial amount of additional dynamism and stability. Its electro-hydraulic multi-plate clutch distributes the torque smoothly between the axles. Should the front wheels lose traction, the clutch redirects it completely to the rear within a few milliseconds. The SQ2 is fitted with the latest generation of the multi-place clutch, which features many improvements, for example to the bearings and oil supply, that increase its efficiency. The pump is powered by a low-wear, brushless electric motor. The entire clutch is just under one kilogram (2.2 lb) lighter than the part in the predecessor model. This is due in part to the fact that the control unit is integrated in the clutch housing.
The driving pleasure provided by the electronically controlled quattro drive has remained at the same high level. During sporty driving, the clutch can direct some of the torque to the rear axle and thereby increase dynamism as soon as the driver turns the wheel. The quattro management system enables precise turn-in during load reversal, and provides maximum control and reliability when drifting on a low-friction surface. The wheel-selective torque control rounds off the handling with minor brake interventions at the relieved wheels on the inside of the curve.
As elsewhere in the Audi range, Vorsprung specification offers the ultimate pre-defined equipment package for the SQ2. Taking the Black Edition model as its basis, but marked out externally by its exclusive alloy wheels and Matrix LED lighting, the top tier SQ2 is further enhanced by features such as front seat heating for the upgraded Fine Nappa leather sport seats, a panoramic sunroof, Bang & Olufsen audio and the Audi phone box enabling wireless charging and connection of smartphones to the vehicle’s aerial.
Its driver assistance capability also increases considerably thanks to the inclusion of systems such as park assist for automatic 'hands-free'steering into and out of parking spaces, Audi side assist blindspot monitoring, the cross traffic assist reversing aid and adaptive cruise assist, the latter making its SQ2 debut as part of the model update. Adaptive cruise assist enables the driver to let the system largely take over the tasks of accelerating, decelerating and steering within a lane with the help of its frontal camera and sophisticated sensors. In order to maintain automatic lateral guidance, the driver need only gently touch the steering wheel, which is part of the system, to prove that they are paying attention.