► New Audi SQ2 caught on test
► Spy photos show car minus camo
► Sporty makeover, Audi TTS engine
The go-faster team in Ingolstadt is busy turning the Q2 crossover into the high-performance Audi SQ2 you see before you. Shorn of nearly all disguise, but not yet in 100% showroom condition, it's our best look yet at the 300bhp+ pocket rocket on stilts.
Our spies have already caught the new 2018 Audi SQ2 on winter test and at the Nordschleife in Germany, as engineers fettle the car ahead of launch. Wherever it's seen, this prototype has performance unlike any other small crossover we've seen.
The SQ2 is part of a major product offensive at Audi, which will see 21 new models launched in the next 24 months. Just think about that for a second: it's a new model, or derivative like this, every month.
This reflects the investment the VW Group is pumping into its premium brand; it's all about invading every segment going - and sparking a few new markets, too.
The Q2 range has been on sale for a couple of years now, giving Ingolstadt's performance specialists time to turn their attention to a warmed-over version, spied here bereft of nearly all disguise. We can now see the regulation quad exhaust pipes and new S-branded brake callipers, denoting the upgraded braking equipment.
We caught the SQ2 on test in convoy with some Skoda prototypes... does this point to a warmed-over Karoq vRS perchance? We do hope so...
Click here for our Audi Q2 review
Audi SQ2: how fast will it be?
Our sources suggest it will share the familiar 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo engine that's seen service in the Audi TTS, with which it shares the fundamentals of its familiar VW Group MQB architecture.
That means a 1984cc four-pot, breathed on by a chunky turbocharger to create peak power of 306bhp at 5800rpm and 280lb ft at 1800rpm - all accompanied by a woofly exhaust track and fizzing pop-bangs on the overrun.
A seven-speed twin-clutch DSG transmission is expected and this particular Q2 will be Quattro only to tame all that grunt. We'd predict a 0-62mph time of around 5.0sec - fast enough to make a Nissan Juke Nismo look a bit pedestrian, frankly...
What about a diesel SQ2?
Nope. The smaller you go in SUV-kind, the smaller the appetite for derv, Audi insiders insist. Which means the SQ2 will be offered only in petrol form, rather than the SQ5 TDI big brother.
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