This is the cheapest way into the Q5 family.
The Audi Q5 has consistently been one of the luxury brand's most popular models since its inception back in 2008. Now in its second generation, the Q5, along with the more powerful SQ5, and their accompanying Sportback body styles, are in-demand as ever. But before you go out and buy, there's a critical piece of new information you need to know about first. The 2022 Q5 has a new base powertrain, specifically a 2.0-liter inline-four with 201 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque.
Called the Q5 40, it replaces last year's Q5 45 as the cheapest way into the Q5 family. The Q5 45 trim shares this engine but its version has a healthier 261 hp and 237 lb-ft of twist. This trim isn't going anywhere but it's more expensive than last year by $2,600, now starting at $46,995. The new 40 trim begins at $44,495.
No official announcement was made regarding the new trim and price change, which was first noticed by Car and Driver. The Q5 40 will come as standard with all-wheel drive, a seven-speed automatic transmission, and the same three trim levels as the 45: Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige. However, it can't be had with the Sportback, meaning the cheapest Q5 Sportback will remain the 45 trim. That starts off at $50,100.
As this has yet to be officially announced by Audi, we don't know the exact reasoning behind the new base model but, if we had to make an educated guess, it's to help the Q5 remain competitive as it approaches the end of its lifecycle.
The 40 trim doesn't cost significantly less than the 45 but there will doubtless be buyers looking to save money due to rising inflation. It's also an opportunity to help lure more customers into dealer showrooms. Remember, there's the all-new Q4 e-tron, an all-electric SUV crossover that begins at a very reasonable $43,900 before any tax credits. Yes, it's cheaper than the Q5 40.
Also noteworthy is that the EPA rates both versions of the Q5's 2.0-liter engine with nearly identical figures. The 40 does have a 1 mpg advantage on the highway over the 45.