2019 Audi Q5 Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Electrical system, vehicle speed control, brake and structure issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Luxury SUVs belong to a competitive market. To get ahead, models must be made to exceed expectations, which is what the 2019 Audi Q5 claims to do. In fact, the automaker boasts that the newer lineup is the “the lap – and mind – of technology,” but owners can’t find room for anything but a disappointment. From a defective structure to a vehicle speed control issue and a faulty electrical system, this SUV isn’t going to make the cut.

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Problems with the Vehicle Structure

For a premium price, owners expect to receive a luxury model that will stand the test of time. However, this Audi Q5 faces some serious structure-related concerns.

One such complaint is found on the NHTSA website. “During a rear end collision, the vehicle, a 2019 Audi Q5, was stopped, stationary, on a city street at a red light. The vehicle was struck in the rear by another vehicle going approx. 30-40 mph. Both rear seat passengers in the Audi sustained significant injuries. Of the major complaints, the lower back injury has been ongoing (6 months+) of significant back pain worsened and significantly increased due to the design of the rear seats and specifically the built-in ‘lumbar support’ in the rear passenger seats. This stiff and extruding lumbar protrusion built into the rear passenger seats was forced into the lower lumbar region of both rear seat passengers during the motor vehicle collision. Both rear seat passengers were wearing their seat belts at the time of the accident. This MVA was documented by a police report, insurance claims and ongoing litigation.”

This structure concern brings forth a serious problem, but it’s not the only issue to be aware of. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V737000 showcases a recall affecting 174,000 vehicles that have a wheel arch cover trim that could detach on its own. If this happens, the debris is a significant road hazard, possibly even causing an accident. To show how poorly this vehicle is made, take a look at another recall. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V473000 states that some vehicles have an incorrectly welded instrument panel carrier that can break during impact, causing damage to the front passenger air bag. With this vital safety system not working the way it should, occupants are at risk of injury. That seems to be what the Q5 is known for at this point – leading to larger injuries. Maybe the cabin is filled with technology, but the manufacturer missed the basics, like air bag operation and holding the parts in place.

2019 Audi Q5 Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Electrical System
Seat Belts
Service Brakes
Exterior Lighting
Power Train
Vehicle Speed Control
Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking

Problems with the Brakes and Adaptive Cruise Control

There are just as many concerns with the vehicle speed control on the 2019 Audi Q5.

Look at this NHTSA complaint. “I have a new 2019 Audi Q5 Technik. While using Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) set at 75 mph in the passing lane on Saturday, August 31, 2019, the Audi’s Traffic Sign Recognition System responded to a 55 mph sign somewhere off to the side of the highway. It changed the ACC setting from 75 to 55 mph and applied the brakes hard. I had to tap the brake pedal to regain control and accelerate to avoid a rear-end collision. The Audi manual states on page 95 that ‘Traffic Sign Recognition does not adapt your vehicle’s speed to match the speed limit’! However, on page 101, the manual describes a Predictive Efficiency Assist System which when switched on will behave as I have described. This setting is found within the infotainment system. It was not pointed out to me by the selling dealer and had been apparently switched on when I took possession of the new vehicle. This feature is dangerous and should be set to off by default. I will never turn it on! There were a number of occasions on my drive that day when other vehicles were following me dangerously closely and this sudden deceleration would have caused a rear-end collision at highway speed.”

One way to maintain the speed in a vehicle is to use the braking system, but that seems to be defective as well. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V277000 states that there is a short brake master cylinder casting in the brake system that could create a sudden loss in braking power. As a reassurance, it’s noted that the parking brake and emergency brake will continue to work as intended, in case that’s at all comforting. Again, in the focus to create the “technology” that sets this model apart, the automaker failed once again with a basic system. But, who needs to stop anyway? Especially when the car will do it for you.

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Problems with the Electrical System

Some of the problems already discussed have a lot to do with the electrical system, but the complaints continue to pile up.

Here’s one from an Edmunds review. “$7000 for NAV and other accessories.Unfortunately, the voice command is absurd on this beautiful SUV.  Out of 30+ commands, it only got 1 right – to go to a popular bank. Cannot input my home address. Cannot go shopping, cannot manually input. The Q5 handles well. But I am left wondering what else I may discover. Bose speakers sound average, a waste of $900.”

In the midst of everything else, it turns out that the technology isn’t really all that’s it’s cracked up to be from Audi. Even Service Bulletin #A9619422055256_1 talks about the need for a software update to correct Wrong Way Traffic Sign messages from appearing in the instrument panel unnecessarily. It might be time for Audi to consider a new tagline for this model, but what does it have to boast about?

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work out your lemon case at no cost to you. The law makes Audi pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.


Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones

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