Experience gleaned from the Q3 has taught us what to expect from an Audi crossover born of hatchback underpinnings: sterling body control, obliging agility and unambiguous stability. The smaller, lower Q2 proves little different.
In broad strokes, Ingolstadt has succeeded in its stated aim of producing a mildly high-sided car which drives like an oversized supermini.
Anyone craving the gentler lope of a larger SUV will be disappointed; on passive suspension, the Q2 is firm, formally mannered and typically direct.
As with the Q3, the model’s physically longer suspension travel is kept on a short leash. Larger undulations reveal slightly more liberal body movement than is usually typical of Audi’s hatchbacks, but the sensation tends to be held rigorously in check; ditto the lateral roll when cornering.
While this doesn’t translate into an entirely blemish-free ride quality, the chassis bent suits the progressive (but never less than quick) steering, and it is the incisive integration of the two that provides the Q2 with a familiarly alert driving style.
This works in the crossover’s favour most of the time. Sitting lower than you would in a Q3 and on suspension that succumbs less to a nondescript staccato bob, you tend to just blithely get on with the business of driving it as you would any other small hatchback.
That will quite feasibly suit most drivers migrating from a supermini into a compact crossover, but for anyone keen on pedalling along merely for the sake of it, the Q2’s refusal to stand out from its manufacturer’s line-up, or prove likeably different in the manner best demonstrated by the recently arrived Seat Ateca, makes it a less persuasive prospect than we might have hoped for.
That being said, the Q2 took the Hill Route mostly in its stride says much about the way it has been set up. Most higher-sided crossovers, even compact ones, tend to be upset by Millbrook’s deliberately stressful gradients, but the Audi is well placed to resist its weight-shifting tendencies, and while the tacked-down composure of a conventional hatch is ultimately missing from the handling repertoire, it never leans excessively.
As you might expect, better lateral control of the body means that it tends to maintain its hold on the road for slightly longer, and while understeer lurks at the outer limit of its ability, there’s sufficient grip leading up to it to make pushing on a worthwhile exercise.
The notion is encouraged by the steering, which may shun feedback but at least manages to make its variable-ratio rack predictable. Combine all this with the advantages of the car’s small size and the Q2 makes for an agile, if unremarkable, steer.