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Audi SQ5 – cinch Weekend Wheels

Cold weather and slippery roads have us pining for something that laughs in the face of winter

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You won’t be surprised to hear sales of all-wheel drive cars tend to rise at this time of the year. Nor would you question why car manufacturers have long been vying to convince motorists that their all-wheel drive efforts are the best. During the winter months, all-wheel drive cars are big business. Just ask German car manufacturer Audi

Ever since it burst into the sporting spotlight back in the early eighties by dominating the World Rally Championship with a new four-wheel drive Quattro model, Audi’s low-grip credentials have been rock solid. And while today’s quattro-branded cars (which are badged with a lower case ‘q’, unlike the original rallying legend) don’t use full-time four-wheel drive systems, but rather part-time all-wheel drive tech, few would question their abilities. 

Take the Audi SQ5 you see here. This is a high-powered, high-caliber and year-round dependable SUV, capable of offering entertainment whether there’s rain, snow or sun outside. It might share little more than a four-ringed badge and that ‘quattro’ nametag with Audi’s iconic eighties champ, but the SQ5 unquestionably does the lineage proud. Anyone who’s laughed off a winter in one will know why. It’s represents no nonsense motoring.

It’s quick, too, with 347hp produced by a high-tech turbocharged V6 diesel engine, easily making the SQ5 worthy of weekend duties through January and February. Its clever diesel engine is equally as smart and economical to run as it is characterful, meaning you can enjoy its muscle (700Nm of the stuff, if that’s your thing), and brag about a 5.1-second 0-62mph time, all while knowing this bruiser can eke out over 40 miles per gallon on a cruise, according to official figures. That means sports car performance in any season, without demanding too much from your wallet or purse. 

Also, like the regular Q5 with which it shares a base, the SQ5 is a spacious, comfortable five-seater with a boot big enough to swallow the weekly shop or a family’s luggage. Plus, it’s an Audi, which means it comes with a tech-laden interior, a sturdy finish and, let’s be frank, a flash badge on its nose. Whether you appreciate its links to the WRC-winning Quattro doesn’t matter. Whatever the weather outside, you know you’re in a good place when behind the wheel of an SQ5. 

This particular car, a 2020 model, looks fresh and ready to face the road salts and grime of the coming weeks. It’s waiting in cinch’s all-digital showroom with a price of £49,450, a saving of seven grand on when it was new – and that’s before its thousands of pounds worth of options were added. This car has a lot of them, including all-round parking sensors, heated seats, wireless phone charging and – key for those comfort claims – Audi’s adjustable air suspension. A cold, wet or snowy day needn’t be of concern when you’ve got the keys to this in your hand.

Subject to availability.