Stylish and sporty, the Q5 is one of the better choices among compact luxury SUVs. The Q5 feels solid, is rewarding to drive and has a plush, quiet cabin.
The Q5 delivers fun to drive handling and inspires confidence. The ride initially feels firm, but proves absorbent when needed and steady when cruising. The base four-cylinder turbocharged engine and eight-speed transmission racked up a commendable 21 mpg overall while providing decent performance. While capable, that engine is louder and less refined than the optional V6, subtracting from the car's premium feel. Opting for the V6 brings much more refinement and an abundance of effortless thrust.
The Q5 imparts a feeling of being rock-solid with a quiet cabin. Its impeccably finished interior has an innate quality ambiance with soft touch points and precision-feeling controls. The seats are firm, but prove extremely comfortable and supportive. Rear-seat and cargo space are fairly modest, however. The unified center controller that interacts with the dash-mounted screen has a learning curve, but once mastered, the MMI system proves logical and comprehensive. Many tasks can be executed through well-designed steering wheel controls and monitored on a small screen in the instrument panel, reducing the time with eyes off the road and hands off the wheel.