For anyone with even a passing familiarity with current Audi products, the Q5 cabin is instantly recognisable. In many ways this is a good thing, for in all but one key element the Q5’s cabin is an example of excellent ergonomics.
The dials and the air-con and entertainment controls are all cleanly designed, logically placed and, for the most part, manufactured from quality materials. It is, however, disappointing that the cabin isn’t more tailored for the Q5; other than the slightly taller dash, you could be in an A4. There is none of the flair you find, for example, in the Volkswagen Touareg, with its enlarged controls.
Audi’s excellent MMI control system, however, continues to impress with its ease of use, and in this third generation the graphics are much improved, particularly for the satellite navigation.
The critical flaw in the Q5’s cabin, and one inherited from the A4, is the driving position. In the translation to RHD, the gearbox bell housing pushes the pedal box to the right. Although the Q5’s higher-set driving position means this is less problematic than in the A4, it still necessitates an uncomfortable twist in the lower body, damaging long-distance comfort. For a premium manufacturer, this is a surprisingly basic mistake.
Elsewhere, the cabin is impressively spacious, with plenty of leg and headroom for four adults, five at a push. The rear seats – which split 60/40 and both slide and recline if you’ve specified the Rear Seat Plus option, are comfortable enough to ensure longer journeys will pass without complaint.