Why The Audi Q5 TDI quattro Tiptronic Is A Great SUV

Front 3/4 view of the 2014 Audi Q5
The 2014 Audi Q5 TDI quattro Tiptronic

There is a key to design that not all automakers understand, or at least apply: Form, in and of itself, can be beautiful. Form and function serving each other is beyond beautiful.

Audi has understood and applied that in its products for years. Audis are always impeccably designed, not styled, intelligently thought out and meticulously executed. The 2014 Audi Q5 TDI quattro Tiptronic is a tremendous example of that. There is not a wasted nor superfluous line on the car. It is simple, yet conveys an elegance that most crossovers in its size class simply do not.

Rear three-quarters view of the 2014 Audi Q5 TDI
The 2014 Audi Q5.

And although you can order a Q5 with a different engine, the 3-liter diesel V6 just seems so right.  The advantages are apparent on the window sticker, an EPA estimated 24 miles per gallon city/31 highway unlikely to be matched by any gasoline-powered competitor, and the seemingly endless pull that the engine has. There, the numbers tell the tale.  240 horsepower, but 428 pounds per foot of torque. The transmission is an eight-speed automatic and quattro (Audi spells it in all lower case) is a permanent all-wheel drive system.  It provides a balance of power and economy, and the solidity of the Audi's body combined with the surefootedness of quattro makes the Q5 extremely reassuring to drive. It feels unshakable.

$46,500 is the base price, which could be a recipe for a $60,000 bottom line, but the Q5 we drove was equipped as intelligently as the vehicle itself. 19-inch wheels, a panoramic sunroof, power tailgate, leather seating surfaces and three-zone climate control are all standard.

Interior view of 2015 Audi Q5
2014 Audi Q5 interior.

The interior is, as Audi interiors have been for more than a decade, among the best in any car.  A blending of straightforward design, logical layouts that aid function and a very high standard of materials and workmanship.

The test vehicle had optional Glacier White Metallic paint for $500 and the Audi MMI Navigation Plus package, adding a CD/DVD player, HDRadio, satellite navigation with voice control, a color driver infomation display, and a parking system with rear view camera.  That package costs $3,550.

The as-tested price is $51,445, including $895 destination charge. We have driven far lesser vehicles that cost far more. This should be at the top of your list of candidates.