Spyshots: 2016 Audi Q1 Test Mule Hides Under Volkswagen Tiguan Disguise

2016 / 2017 Audi Q1 9 photos
Photo: CarPix
2016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q12016 / 2017 Audi Q1
Audi executives believe that by the end of the decade, 45% of their global sales will be SUVs. To achieve the goal, the Germans plan to expand the current lineup of just three models to more than double that. We believe this prototype could be a test mule for the upcoming Q1, which should debut towards the end of 2016.
If the VW Tiguan and Audi Q3 are about the same size and both ride on the PQ35 platform, how is this a Q1 test mule? Well, if you pay close enough attention, you may notice that the wheelbase is slightly shorter, and the wheels sit further inside the arches than they are supposed to.

By today's standards, the Tiguan is considered too narrow for its class, so we must be dealing with a sub-compact SUV, a Nissan Juke rival. The test facility it emerges from is amusingly located on Rudolf Diesel street. This is the same Audi lab in Meuspath where we saw the SQ7 only a couple of weeks ago.

The Q1 is expected to be unveiled in 2016 and will be based on the MQB platform instead of the older Polo platform that is also used by the A1 hatch. However, both cars will share the latest generation of downsized petrol and diesel engines.

Our insiders have told us that the SQ1 name has been trademarked, and this performance model will offer a similar engine+transmission package to the S1, but optimized in terms of weight. With around 230 horsepower, it should have enough power for most, but a 300 horsepower RS Q1 is also likely on the cards.

Alfa Romeo problems

Audi wants to cover every niche from the Q1 to the Q8 upcoming flagship SUV. However, Alfa Romeo own the rights to use the Q2 and Q4 names for use in the automobile industry.

So far, the Q2 model doesn't seem to be a priority for Audi. But just to keep you guys informed, we've heard that they may name it A1 Q instead and that the car would be all-electric, with some attributes borrowed from MPVs.

As for the larger Q4, Audi reportedly plans to call it TTQ instead and make this car slender enough to be part of the TT family of two-door sportscars.

But considering that the Opel Mokka and Renault Captur were best sellers for their respective brands, we believe the Q1 should have top priority.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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