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Built at the Ingolstadt factory in Germany, the Q5 will be Audi’s answer to the BMW’s X3 and Mercedes’ upcoming GLK. With production scheduled to start later this year, our European photographers caught this Q5 with little disguising undergoing final tests on the roads around the German Nürburgring.

According to Audi, 300 million Euros (AUD $500 million) have been invested in the project, with around 1700 employees involved. The Q5 is based on the same new platform as the A5 and the brand-new A4, making it possible for Audi to offer a full range of engines from the FSI-equipped four- and six-cylinder engines to diesel models.

Audi Q5 Spy Photos

For those wanting a little more, there is already talk of an S5 variant, powered by Audi’s 4.2-litre V8.

Audi Q5 Spy Photos

All Q5 variants are expected to receive an updated version of the Quattro all-wheel-drive system and be driven via either a six-speed manual or the new seven-speed DSG gearbox.

Audi Q5 Spy Photos

Additional features include hill-descent control and an adjustable air suspension.