Audi doesn't mess with the formula in smarter, lighter Q5
It might be difficult to tell from a distance, but you're looking at the brand-new Audi Q5. With a stronger, lighter body and a new set of efficient powertrains, it aims to take the luxurious feeling from the Q7 and scales it down for families who don't need seven seats and a gargantuan boot.
As it did with the new A4, Audi has turned to an intelligent mix of materials for a lighter, stiffer body. Measuring up at 4.66 m (15.3 ft) long, 1.89 m (6.2 ft) wide and 1.66 m (5.4 ft) tall, it's bigger than its predecessor in every direction. But, rather than packing on the pounds, it's actually up to 90 kg (198 lb) lighter than the outgoing car.
Power comes from a choice of four diesel engines and one petrol motor, all of which are more efficient than before. The entry-level diesel puts out 110 kW (150 hp) of power, although drivers who want a bit more grunt under their right foot can also opt for 120 kW (163 hp) and 140 kW (190 hp) versions of the same 2.0-liter turbodiesel motor.
If that's not enough, there's also a 3.0-liter diesel on offer, with 210 kW (286 hp) of power and a chubby 620 Nm of torque. Meanwhile, petrol devotees are able to spec a 2.0-liter TFSI engine with 185 kW (252 hp) on tap.
Just like any good Audi, all-wheel drive is available across the range. In entry-level diesel models, the system defaults to front-wheel drive in normal driving conditions, before using a central clutch to rapidly shoot power to the rear axle when it detects slip. More powerful versions are fitted with a more conventional quattro system, which can be coupled with an active rear diff for better power-down on the way out of corners.
Opening a door reveals the Q5's cabin is standard Audi fare, with lots of high-quality materials and high-tech features. Quilted seats are an option, as is the gorgeous virtual cockpit which has found its way into everything from the Volkswagen Passat and Audi TT to the Lamborghini Huracan. Buyers will also be able to spec the full set of active driver aids, including auto-emergency braking, lane-keeping assist and cross-traffic alerts.
The Q5 debuted at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, and will hit showrooms early in 2017.