If Audi’s ambition with the Q5 was to produce a Freelander, but with less of the rugged go-anywhere tech and a bit more glitz, it has achieved its goal.

It is perhaps a missed opportunity that the styling is not more individual, but we can’t argue with the spacious and classy interior, equipment and excellent engine. The Q5 will also impress those looking for a mid-sized SUV that handles like a saloon; its agility is quite an achievement.

The Audi Q5 is the best soft-roader for those not heading off road

But one not without cost. And again, the problem is ride, partly because the restless fidget seriously damages the Q5’s long-distance comfort, but mostly because it feels like a car not quite finished. And yet, even considering this and the offset driving position, the Q5, by the thinnest of margins, is the best soft-roader for those not heading off road.

Not because it is perfect, but because its rivals have flaws of their own. With Audi already stealing a march on its nearest rivals, the new Q5 has some tough shoes to follow in.