AUDI TEST MULES: The next generation Audi Q5, (extreme right) and all-new Q2 were spotted testing the Western Cape. Image: Heinrich Reinke
Cape Town - Land Rover's Discovery 5, Maserati Levante... It seems the Western Cape is the perfect place for automakers to conduct hot weather testing of new vehicles.
The latest batch of SA-bound models were spotted undergoing testing are Audi's new SUVs and a coupe.
The units spotted in SA are the new A5 coupe, Q5 and Q2 SUVs.
Are they headed for SA?
Audi SA said: "We can confirm Audi AG have been testing in SA, however we are not aware of the specific tests carried out."
Audi confirms all three models will be introduced locally in the first quarter of 2017.
New Audi A5 coupe:
The next-generation A5, codenamed B9, will share the same underpinnings as the new A4 (due to be launched in SA in February 2016).
The architecture, made up of high-strength steel, lightweight aluminium and a host of advanced composites has reportedly shaved off a 100kg compared to the outgoing model.
In terms of engines front, expect 1.8 and 2.0 litre petrol turbos, while a 3.0-litre V6 diesel and a 3.0-litre V6 turbo (S5) round off the range. An RS5 should make its way later in the life-cycle. No engine or specifications have been confirmed for SA.
New Audi Q5
According to Autocar, Audi's mid-size SUV will go head-to-head with BMW's X3 and Volvo's XC60. The new Q5, like the A5 and A4, will use the the firm's latest evolution of the MLB platform.
The test mules spotted show a slightly bigger vehicle, with dimensions at 4.7m long, 1.9m wide and 1.6m tall.
Expect four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines. Autocar says the Q5's V6 petrol engines form part of a new generation of engines being developed in a joint engineering project between Audi and Porsche."
The new Q5 will be built at Audi's new factory in San José Chiapa in Mexico. Further assembly will take place in Changchun, China and Aurangabad, India.
New Audi Q2 in SA
The Q2, according to Audicars.com, will be Ingolstadt's smallest high-riding car yet. Based on the MQB-based platform, the Q2 will be available with front-wheel drive with more expensive units offered with Quattro.
The Q2 will be unveiled at the 2016 Geneva auto show in March, and will be offered with a range of three-and four-cylinder petrol and turbodiesel engines.
Rumours of a range-topping RS Q2 are doing the rounds, sporting the same 2.0-litre engine in the TTS and S3.