Listen intently. That’s what Audi means in Latin. The German automaker’s name came about when founder August Horch left Horch & Co. in 1909, but couldn’t take his car company’s title with him. So instead he translated his last name into Latin and founded Audi, a word that’s since become synonymous with luxury, elegance, and sophistication. Yet take one look at its latest offering, the 2017 Q5, and another superlative rings true: Audi still has quite an ear for harmonious design.
A leader in the crossover class, the Q5 exemplifies off-road might with city smarts. Thanks to a new adaptive air suspension system, this midsize SUV transitions seamlessly from throttling over dirt roads to navigating pot-holed pavement. Indeed, if the Q5 played for the Celtics, it would be Isaiah Thomas—this car is on the ball and seriously handles. Yet perhaps its most novel innovation, as far as Bostonians are concerned anyway, comes to aid in the worst of times.
Picture bumper to bumper traffic on the Mass Pike. Instead of having to endure the ankle-aching stop-and-start, one can simply flip on the Q5’s traffic jam assist to autonomously navigate through the congestion. If only all horn-happy Massholes could drive the Q5, Boston might shed its regretful reputation as the road rage capital of the East Coast. Of course, all of these innovations were unthinkable when August Horch first launched Audi more than a century ago. And yet the founder’s name still drives the design as Audi continues to listen intently to what drivers want.