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2018-10-01 09:14
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Image: Newspress

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Striking design meets driving exhilaration - Audi is presenting the SQ2 for the first time during the 2018 Paris Motor Show.

The new top model in the Q2 family is a titan in the compact SUV segment, with a 220kW output channelled through S sports suspension and quattro all-wheel-drive which enables zero to 100km/h acceleration in 4.8 seconds and a top speed of 250km/h. 

Audi South Africa confirmed the SQ2 will be here in the first quarter of 2019. 

0 – 100km/h in 4.8 seconds: the engine

The heart of any Audi S model is the engine, and the 2.0 TFSI in the SQ2 is in peak condition. Developed by Audi engineers and built in Gyor, it delivers 220kW and a constant 400Nm of torque between 2000 and 5200 rpm. As a result it can dispatch the sprint from 0 to 100km/h in 4.8 seconds, and power on to a governed 250km/h top speed.

The four-cylinder, 1984cc unit responds instantly up to the redline at 6500 rpm. In the dynamic mode offered by the Audi drive select dynamic handling system, it responds even more directly, with brief double de-clutching accompanying the gear changes by the S tronic and a particularly sonorous engine note. 

Efficiency is also a major focal point with the 2.0-litre turbocharged TFSI engine. Two electrically powered rotary valves consolidated into a module regulate the coolant flows. Another major component of the thermal management system is the exhaust manifold integrated into the cylinder head. It helps the engine to warm up quickly. 

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Targeted measures implemented in many components increase strength and reduce internal friction. The regulated oil pump requires little drive energy. Under part load, the engine management system deactivates FSI direct fuel injection. Instead, fuel is injected indirectly into the intake manifold, which reduces particle emissions. A particle filter also cleans the exhaust gas.

Traction, stability and handling: the power transmission

A seven-speed S tronic with a wide ratio of 8.7 between the first and last gears transfers the power of the 2.0 TFSI. The driver can operate the lightning-fast dual-clutch transmission in the automatic modes D or S, or shift ‘manually’. If the Audi drive select dynamic handling system is in “efficiency” mode, the clutch disengages when coasting, allowing the compact sport SUV to freewheel. With start-stop active, the engine shuts off when speed drops to 6.4km/h or below.

As with every Audi S model, quattro all-wheel drive is standard in the SQ2. It combines high traction with compelling handling. Its central element is a hydraulically actuated multi-plate clutch. It distributes torque continuously between the axles. If the front wheels lose grip, the multi-plate clutch can transfer up to 100% of the force to the rear within just a few milliseconds.

Under acceleration, Audi says the torque literally pushes the fast SUV into the bend. The quattro management system enables precise turn-in during load reversal, and provides maximum control and reliability when drifting on a low-friction road surface. During fast driving, the quattro drive works closely together with the wheel-selective torque control, which smooths out the handling with tiny braking interventions at the inner wheels under reduced load.

20mm lower: the S sport suspension

With a more dynamic setup than the system on which it is based, the S sports suspension lowers the body by 20 millimetres. The power assistance of the standard progressive steering has an S-specific characteristic. Its rack is specially geared so that the boost ratio changes the further the wheel is turned – the greater the steering angle, the more direct the ratio. This improves agility when manoeuvring, in urban traffic and in tight bends.

Typical S model: the exterior design

The ‘standard’ Audi Q2 is already an SUV with a very distinctive character. The precise body line, the polygonal indentation on the flanks and the blade on the C-pillar give it an unmistakable appearance. Audi has further honed the exterior design for the S model. The front end alone indicates the special position it occupies. Eight upright double bars divide the large, octagonal Singleframe grille. A front splitter joins the outermost edges of the two dominating air inlets to underscore the full width of the brawny SQ2 front end. The standard LED headlights and LED rear lights with dynamic indicators radiate a characteristic, arrow-shaped light signature


Striking details also set accents on the flanks and at the rear. The trim strips in the lower region of the doors are strongly contoured; the exterior mirror housings sport an aluminium-look finish. A long roof edge spoiler provides for sufficient downforce; the diffuser insert houses four exhaust tailpipes. The exterior colour palette includes the standard ibis white and the optional colours Vegas yellow, ara blue, Daytona grey, floret silver, glacier white, coral orange, mythos black, quantum grey and tango red.

With a drag coefficient of 0.34, the Audi SQ2 glides easily through the wind. The noise level on-board remains low thanks to the vibration-optimised body and Audi’s high level of competence in aeroacoustics. A structure of hot-shaped steels, which combine extreme strength with low weight, forms the strong backbone of the passenger cell and is responsible for the high rigidity of the entire body.

The standard Audi drive select dynamic handling system lets the driver choose between the profiles auto, comfort, dynamic, efficiency and individual. It uses these profiles to manage the character of the steering, the seven-speed S tronic and additional systems. A button allows the driver to set the Electronic Stabilisation Control (ESC) to off-road mode or turn it off entirely. Hold assist is available as an option.The range of wheels available from Audi and Audi Sport offers a choice of ten designs and sizes. 18-inch alloy wheels with size 235/45 tyres are standard; 19-inch wheels with size 235/40 tyres will be available as an option The large brakes measure 340 millimetres in diameter up front and 310 millimetres in the rear. They are particularly durable, and their calipers – optionally painted red rather than black – have S badges.

Dynamic accents: the interior

The compact Audi SQ2 has an exterior length of 4210 millimetres and a wheelbase of 2594 millimetres, allowing for a spacious interior. The luggage compartment has a volume of 355 to 1000 litres depending on the position of the two or three-way split rear backrests. Standard equipment includes sport seats, a front centre armrest, automatic air conditioning, a sport multifunction steering wheel – optionally with paddles for the S tronic – and the driver information system with colour display.

The optional Audi virtual cockpit which forms part of the Technology Pack replaces the driver information system. The driver controls the fully digital instrument cluster via buttons on the steering wheel. The 31cm display offers three different views, including a screen that places the rev counter front and centre. The most important information is also visible in a head-up display, another option.

The interior design takes up the progressive, taut lines of the exterior and uses colours and materials to set dynamic accents. The headlining, pillars and seat upholstery are finished in black as standard. The decorative inlay on the instrument panel is matt brushed aluminium. The pedal caps and the footrest are made of stainless steel; the illuminated door sill trims up front sport S logos. The instrument dials are grey and the needles white. The MMI monitor and the display in the instrument cluster or Audi virtual cockpit show S-specific start screens when the ignition is switched on.

The seats of the Audi SQ2 are trimmed in a combination of leather and fabric as standard. A leather/Alcantara mix or fine Nappa leather will be optionally available. Accent stripes, contrasting stitching in red and grey, plus embossed S logos round out the range. In addition to black, the fine Nappa leather upholstery is available in two colours (black with red) and with a rhombus pattern.

There are two options for the decorative inlay: a red anodised paint finish and the illuminated version “Format light graphics” (with the ten-colour ambient lighting package). Other options include air vents with red interior rings and the flat-bottomed steering wheel with shift paddles.supports the fast LTE wireless standard and includes a Wi-Fi hotspot for the passengers’ mobile devices.

The new Audi SQ2 is being presented for the first time during the 2018 Paris Motor Show at the beginning of October. 

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