2021 Audi SQ2 Review
High-performance Audi SQ2 debuts in Australia bringing S level performance at a compelling price point
How Much Does The 2021 Audi SQ2 Cost?
The new Audi SQ2 has arrived in Australia, joining the recently revamped Audi Q2 line-up <link to review> as its new performance hero.
Powered by a 2.0-litre TFSI turbocharged petrol engine paired to a 7-speed S tronic dual clutch transmission, the Audi SQ2 is available as a single variant priced from $64,400.
The SQ2 offers a high level of specification including a host of styling and comfort features as standard.
Standard vehicle highlights include:
- 19-inch alloy wheels
- Metallic/pearl effect paint
- Matrix LED headlights with dynamic indicators and high beam assist
- Sport front seats in fine nappa leather with diamond stitching
- Front heated seats
- S sport leather steering wheel
- S sports suspension with 20mm lowered ride height
- Advanced driver assistance systems including adaptive cruise control with Stop&Go function, active lane assist, Audi pre sense basic, park assist and hold assist
- Light graphics inlay with ambient colours
- 3-inch Audi virtual cockpit
- 705W Bang & Olufsen sound system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration
Few options are available for this range-topper but a panoramic sunroof will set you back $1850, privacy glass is $750 and 19-inch Audi Sport alloy wheels in gloss anthracite black will cost $1200. An assortment of styling enhancements are also available as costed options.
What Does The Audi SQ2 Cost To Own?
Audi offers a standard three-year warranty on the SQ2 range which can be extended for a further 2 years at additional cost.
If you choose to service at an Audi dealer, and plan to keep the car for five years, Audi will pre-sell you a service plan which covers the first 5 years or 75,000kms of ownership, whichever comes first.
The service plan for the Audi SQ2 costs $2540 and can be purchased at any time within the first 15,000kms of ownership. As with all service plans, its important to remember that the plan only covers the basic servicing items per the Audi schedule and all additional wear and tear parts such as wiper blades, additional air filters that may be required in dusty conditions, brakes and tyres are all at additional cost.
What’s the 2021 Audi SQ2 Exterior Like?
The new Audi SQ2 has styling enhancements which set it aside from the standard Q2 range. It sits on 20mm lowered springs, has red brake calipers, quad tailpipes and the Matrix LED headlights with a dynamic indicator that gives the SQ2 presence on the road.
No unique paint colour option is available for the SQ2, which is available in a palette of 9 exterior colours, also available on the standard Q2.
Depending on the exterior paint colour contrasting bumper colours are available. In the case of our test car show here in Apple Green, bumpers and lower body are finished in Manhattan grey.
What’s the SQ2 Interior Like?
As you’d expect from an Audi S model, the interior of the SQ2 is plush with a higher level of trim than the standard Q2 vehicles.
Our SQ2 test vehicle had sport front seats in fine nappa leather in black as a no cost option but the standard alternative is a black and red trim. The sports seats have electrical lumbar support and are comfortable and supportive and the heated function an added benefit to take chill off of a brisk autumn day. The SQ2 has a unique S branded Sports steering wheel with paddle shifters and the driving position is excellent.
There isn’t a lot of storage within the centre console of the SQ2 as the Audi phone box charging area takes up some space but the door pockets and glovebox are adequate space for bits and pieces.
How safe is the Audi SQ2?
Just like the rest of the Audi Q2 range, the SQ2 has a five-star ANCAP safety rating. AEB with pedestrian detection is standard, as are side assist, blind spot monitoring, cruise control, rear camera and parking sensors and six airbags.
Available as standard on the SQ2 are advanced driver assistance features including adaptive cruise control and active lane assist, park assist and hold assist.
What’s the Infotainment Like?
The Audi SQ2 features a top-of-the-line 705W Bang & Olufsen premium sound system with 14 speakers including subwoofer. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility is included but only via a wired connection. Qi standard wireless charging is available in the centre console’s Audi phone box.
Audi’s Virtual Cockpit is included as standard and is just as impressive as the day it launched. Like the Q2, the SQ2 features Audi’s MMI navigation plus system which includes an 8-3-inch colour display with 3D maps. There’s no touchscreen functionality so the infotainment system is driven by the MMI dial, touch control panel with handwriting recognition or voice control by saying ‘Hey Audi’.
Anyone who is used to the ease of using a touchscreen to control Apple CarPlay might find reverting to the MMI’s dial interface a little clunky – it’s definitely not as quick as a touchscreen and is a fair bit more distracting to toggle through the choices using the dial.
What engines are available in the Audi SQ2?
The Audi SQ2 is powered by a 221kW 2.0-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder petrol engine. It is paired with a 7-speed dual-clutch S tronic transmission which drives through all four wheels via Audi’s legendary quattro system.
The engine is a torquey beast with upto 400Nm available – sufficient to propel the SQ2 from 0 to 100km/h in 4.9 seconds.
How about the fuel economy?
Fuel economy from the potent engine is not too shabby. On the ADR combined cycle you will see fuel consumption of just 7.7L/100km. During the Audi launch event with some relatively heavy right feet, the SQ2 sat on 8.5L/100km over a journey of 225kms at an average speed of 62km/h.
What is the 2021 Audi Q2 like to drive?
The Audi SQ2 is an easy vehicle to drive and it delivers on its styling and presentation promise. The interior cossets the driver with a supportive seat that lends itself to spirited driving, and the driving position is spot on.
Performance from the potent 2.0-litre powerplant is exhilarating, acceleration is instant and there’s no discernable lag from the dual-clutch transmission. The SQ2 has adjustable drive modes but that doesn’t extend to the suspension – there’s no adaptive suspension available on the SQ2.
Selecting dynamic mode does sharpen up the Audi SQ2’s steering which is responsive and direct but doesn’t give too much in the way of feedback. That’s not to say its sloppy, far from it, like a lot of Audi S models, it just does what it does really well – it is technically excellent.
The same goes for the Audi’s impressive quattro all-paw set up. Through drizzle and heavy rain, the SQ2 remained sure-footed, even under hard acceleration, and through corners. It is hard to get this Audi Quattro model to miss a beat.
What are the alternatives to the Audi SQ2?
The Audi SQ2 is competitively priced against its direct rivals. It feels like it should go toe-to-toe with the much more expensive Mercedes-AMG GLA45 but as it costs $40,000 less it doesn’t seem like a fair battle. Note to editor – we should probably schedule a sporty SUV comparo just to check?
Sticking with the Germans, the BMW X2 M35i priced from $64,900 is another car worth adding to the comparison mix.
The Bottom Line
The Audi SQ2 is an accessible S car for drivers to choose. It is forgiving, so the novice sporty SUV driver who may not be used to a performance vehicle with a higher centre of gravity will be able to jump in this car and give it a decent go, without getting themselves into any kind of trouble.
That’s not to play down its appeal to Audi enthusiasts who might not have the budget for the much more bonkers RSQ3, the Audi SQ2 has plenty to like – its technically proficient, tonnes of fun to drive and with the practicality of SUV styling it makes a fair argument for practicality too.