The Audi Q5 was one of the last models to join the small luxury crossover sport utility vehicle fray, but it’s made the most of its short lifespan. The clean but average exterior hides an interior with plenty of standard and available features. Underneath the hood is a choice of engines and Audi’s venerable Quattro four-wheel drive system. If used as a simple daily driver, it’s a good vehicle with good gas mileage and comfortable to spend time in.
New For 2013
The 2013 Audi Q5 gets a number of new updates, the biggest of the bunch being a brand new V-6 engine. One of the biggest stories on the Q5 is what it isn’t getting, with Audi refusing to release its updated four-cylinder engine in U.S. models due to needing to get it recertified. The Q5 still gets plenty to talk about, including:
- 3.0 liter, V-6 engine that replace the previously offered 3.2-liter V-6
- New headlights with available LED daytime running lights
- New grille
- Updated taillights
- New finishes and accents for interior controls
- New Audi Connect telematics system
- Updated bumpers
- New flat-bottom tips on the exhaust
- Electromechanical steering standard across entire lineup
- New Q5 Hybrid version
While there have been a number of changes to the outside of the 2013 Audi Q5, they are subtle and not immediately noticeable beyond the grille change. The Q5 was already curvy enough to have similarities with Audi’s cars, and the minor design changes for this year do more to make the Q5 appear as an oversized wagon instead of a smaller version of the larger Q7. The design is overall clean and uncluttered, but also a bit forgettable, especially once you look past the front end. 18-inch wheels are standard equipment, but 19- and 20-inch wheels are also available. The three different trim packages available change the outward appearance of the Q5. The Premium package is only available on the 2.0-liter engine and has a sunroof, LED daytime running lights and taillights, and the 18-inch wheels. The Premium Plus package on the 2.0-liter adds Xenon headlights, a panoramic sunroof and a power lift gate. The Premium Plus with the 3.0-liter adds on 19-inch wheels and styling enhancements. Finally, the Prestige package adds adaptive Xenon headlights.
Interior & Cargo
The interior of the 2013 Audi Q5 is simple yet stylish, roomy and comfortable. Seating five, there is adequate head and leg room for average sized adults in every seating position, although putting three adults in the rear seat can be tight in terms of width. The front seats are lacking in adjustability and lateral support, but are otherwise fairly comfortable.
The three different trim levels available for the 2013 Audi Q5 dictate the standard equipment. The Premium package has minimal options, and standard with this package is leather upholstery, tri-zone automatic climate control, a 10-speaker audio system, and the Multi-Media Interface system with a dash-mounted control knob. The Premium Plus trim with the 2.0-liter adds heated seats, auto-dimming mirrors, Bluetooth integration, and driver memory functions, while the 3.0-liter Premium Plus also receives keyless entry and push-button ignition. The Prestige gets manual rear sunshades, an upgraded audio system, and an upgraded MMI system with a navigation package. The Prestige package also allows for exclusive upgrades such as a leather-trimmed dashboard, cooled front seats, and adaptive cruise control. The long list of interior features in the 2013 Audi Q5 makes it pleasant to ride in and a dream to drive.
The 2013 Audi Q5 has plenty of safety features, but the majority of them are options, not standard. At the base level, anti-lock brakes, an electronic stability system are standard. Front, front-seat side-impact, and side curtain airbags for both rows of seats are also standard. Rear-seat side impact airbags are an available option. The Prestige package adds on a blind spot warning system. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has given the 2013 Audi Q5 a score of ""Good"" in every category tested. The Q5, with all of its state-of-the-art safety features, is a perfect family car.
There is a notable difference in the 2013 Audi Q5 with the new 3.0-liter, V-6 engine. Producing 268 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, the horsepower upgrade is minimal but the torque is 52 more lb-ft than before, providing an increase in hauling capabilities and faster acceleration, while not suffering in the area of fuel economy. The 2.0-liter engine is a bit lackluster however, providing only 211 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque. Both of these engines are connected to Audi’s eight-speed automatic transmission that manages to pull a lot out of the engines, but just isn’t enough. With a high curb weight, the 2.0-liter engine has somewhat decent acceleration but can’t haul a load very well at all. The larger engine has a 4400 pound towing capacity, but it isn’t recommended to push this. In terms of drivability and handling, the Audi is top notch. The suspension handles the road well and provides plenty of feedback to the driver, while the steering is precise. The Quattro four-wheel drive is incredibly reliable and able.
Key Competitors For The 2013 Audi Q5
- Acura MDX
- BMW X3
- Range Rover Evoque
- Volvo XC60