2021 Audi Q5 Trim Levels with Comparisons & Configurations.
Versatility is the name of the game when it comes to Audi. Whether you want to stick with the gas-powered engine or give the plug-in hybrid powertrain (which was introduced for 2020) a try, the 2021 Audi Q5 has a little something for everyone. But is it going to fulfill your every need, or should you look for something else entirely?
The new Q5 offers a bunch of revised standard features this year with some changes to the optional ones as well. What does this translate to? More standard features on lower trim levels - something that should cater to the rising consumer demands for these sought-after features.
Not only do you get a ton of standard features courtesy of Audi, but you get the benefit of having standard all-wheel-drive, which is not something that you will easily find within this segment. While many competitors offer standard front-wheel-drive with AWD as an option, Audi knows that SUV drivers tend to like having AWD for those slick winter months and, yes, for a bit of light off-roading.
And with the Q5, you get a high-quality interior design with some seriously stunning materials. All of it speaks to luxury, to be sure, but you also get to enjoy a ton of comfort from the firm-but-well-shaped front seats. (The rear seats could offer more thigh support for adults though.) The standard leather upholstery feels nice and is breathable on all but the hottest of days. You will have to upgrade a few time levels to get ventilation for the front seats.
For the most part, the Q5's cabin remains well-insulated. Only a little bit of wind noise makes its way in, but that is only when you take it up to speed on the highway. Even then, you will not hear much. The engine sounds a bit unpleasant when you put it under hard acceleration, but it otherwise keeps its noise to a bare minimum. Overall, you will be able to enjoy conversations with rear seat passengers and the music coming out of the sound system.
The biggest qualm we have with the Q5 is its limited cargo space. While this is fairly commonplace for its class, for some drivers, the cargo space might not be enough. There is a handy track-based anchoring system for larger items while the hooks can easily hold groceries. Despite its versatility, the space itself feels limited. The problem with that is that the rear seats do not fold completely flat to the cargo floor. At least there is a standard power liftgate to make loading and unloading easy enough.
So, is the 2021 Audi Q5 the right SUV for you? Which of its three trim levels should you get? Will the base Premium trim level meet all your needs, or should you upgrade to the Premium Plus or Prestige? We will compare all three trims (with mention given to the plug-in hybrid, of course) and, in the end, let you know which one we think gives the average buyer the best deal.
Compare the 2021 Audi Q5 Premium vs Premium Plus Trims. What is the Difference?
Let's start things off with the base Premium trim level and the mid-tier trim level, the Premium Plus. Just what makes the 'Plus' a 'plus" over the base trim? Let us delve into the powertrain. A 2.0-L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine is standard equipment, as is a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT). The power output from this engine is 248 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque. If you go for the PHEV (the plug-in hybrid), you get that engine plus the hybrid motor and battery. This will give you a power boost to 349 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. The PHEV can go for 20 miles on pure electric charge before the gas-powered engine will kick into gear.
Now, let us talk safety features. On the Premium, you will get electronic child door locks on the rear doors, a tire pressure monitoring system, and the LATCH system for child car safety seats. The Premium Plus retains these features as well.
The Premium's exterior includes pre-wiring for trailering, power side mirrors that have a heating function, a floor jack and tool kit, a tailgate roof spoiler, and aluminum roof rails. The front features full LED headlights with daytime running light signature lights. All-season tires accompany the standard 18-inch 5-arm-star design wheels. There are also LED taillights with dynamic turn signals added in. Add to that a full paint finish for the body, heat insulation on the rear and side windows, and aluminum trim surrounding the outside of the windows. The only exterior difference between the Premium and the Premium Plus is that the latter comes with 19-inch 5-double-arm design wheels with a bi-color finish on them.
As far as the interior goes, both trim levels offer quite a few standard features. For starters, the Premium gives you the storage package, which means you get a storage net on the front seat back, driver's side storage, a locking glove box, and the luggage storage network for the cargo area. There are four beverage holders for the occupants, front door sill inlays done in aluminum, and a tri-zone automatic climate control system. On top of that, there are features like an auto-dimming rear-view mirror (which includes the Integrated Tolle Module and digital compass), LED interior lighting, a 3-spoke steering wheel with multiple audio and cruise control buttons mounted on top of it, a front center arm rest, illuminated vanity mirrors for each front seat occupant, floor mats for the rear and front, and inlays done in brown walnut wood.
The Premium Plus adds a power panoramic sunroof. It also gives you standard leather upholstery for the seats. Both vehicles have sliding 40/20/40-split rear seats with a reclining function, 4-way power lumbar support for the driver, leather seat covers, power adjustability for the front seats, and front seats with a heating capability.
As far as infotainment features go, both trim levels pack in as much as possible. The Premium trim level comes with Audi pre sense city, Audi drive select, and a limited-time subscription to Audi connect CARE and security services. The parking system plus, Audi pre sense basic and rear, a cruise control system, the Homelink garage door opener, a rear-view camera, high beam assist, a 7-inch color touchscreen with the infotainment system, a built-in navigation system, power tailgate, Audi side assist, push button start with the remote keyless entry system, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity for audio streaming and making phone calls, and the Audi smartphone interface.
This is a pretty decent set-up, for sure, but the Premium Plus adds more. With this trim level, you get Audi's adaptive cruise control system with a traffic jam feature, a top view camera system with a 360-degree view of the vehicle, the Audi virtual cockpit, a wireless charger and signal booster with the Audi phone box, and Audi active lane assist.
Compare the 2021 Audi Q5 Premium Plus vs Prestige Trim Level. What is the Difference?
What can the line-topping Prestige trim level offer that the Premium Plus does not have? Well, there are a few things worthy of mention on the exterior, starting with the matrix design LED headlights that have built-in headlight washers. You even get animated for both the headlights and taillights. To top that all off, on the exterior, you get dual pane acoustic glass on each of the front side windows for an even quieter ride inside of the cabin.
Speaking of the interior, the cabin on the Prestige receives some significant upgrades. Even more beverage holders get added to the cabin. Also, there is a neat multi-color interior ambient/contour LED lighting package that is standard. The rear side windows gain sun shades, and the steering column becomes tilting and telescoping and gains some memory functions. The front passenger seat gains 4-way power lumbar support for extra comfort, and the seat trim is done in partial leather for an additional sense of luxury. Add to that sport front seats with standard heating and ventilation and heating on the rear outboard seats for some serious comfort.
Tech-wise, you will find some nifty upgrades to both the infotainment set-up and to the driver aids. Upgrades and additions here include park assist, the MMI Navigation plus system with MMI touch response technology, a head-up display that projects onto the front windshield, a traffic sign recognition system, a Bang & Olufsen 3D premium sound system (with a whopping 19 speakers, 755 watts, and a 16-channel amplifier), and a 6-month trial subscription to the Audi connect PRIME and Audi connect PLUS online services. After the subscription runs out, you can either opt to keep it for an annual price or leave it alone and not continue using these online-based services. It is all up to you.
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Which Trim to Choose?
Alright, you probably get the idea - the 2021 Audi Q5 is ridiculously well-packed with standard features, which is something you should expect for a vehicle in this segment. While the Q5 has some issues with limited cargo space, it does well in most other areas. The new interior styling elements make the vehicle look super chic, and the upgraded infotainment system is a huge bonus for the model year. The power boost to the 4-cylinder engine is nice too, of course. And last year's PHEV carries over for a great fuel efficient luxury SUV option.
The 2021 Audi Q5 offers three stellar trim levels, but there is one that stands out above the rest for offering the best overall deal to the average buyer in this segment. And that trim level is the mid-tier trim level Premium Plus. The Premium offers a decent amount of features, and the Prestige offers a massive list of them. But, for the price, the Premium Plus hits the nail on the head.
The Premium Plus trim level gains you access to a good amount of standard features that will suit your needs without making the vehicle's price tag jump up too high, as it does on the Prestige trim level. The Premium Plus has a lot of driver aids that some of its competitors relegate to higher trim levels, and the list of standard infotainment features should surely meet your every need and desire when it comes to music and connectivity.
What we think drivers will really like most about the 2021 Audi Q5 is the choice they get between the standard gas-powered engine and the plug-in hybrid. Some drivers will be more attracted to the more fuel efficient PHEV and its 20 miles of electric range on one charge. This gives the Q5 a competitive edge as there is a growing demand for plug-in hybrids in the luxury SUV segment.
• Compare the 2020 Audi Q5 Trim Levels