Audi's all-new Q7 large SUV has rumbled onto Australian roads this week, launching as a single-engine, single-spec offering priced from $103,900.
It's a significant price jump over the most affordable variant of the previous-generation Q7, the $91,500 3.0 TDI, however the new car's extra power, torque and slightly fatter standard equipment list should compensate for some of that impost.
And though the new 3.0 litre turbo diesel V6 that is the sole powerplant boasts more grunt than the outgoing 3.0 TDI, it also promises to be 20 percent more efficient - as well as a fair whack faster - than the model it replaces.
The 90-degree 3.0 litre turbo diesel V6 returns, but thanks to a new turbocharger tuning and low-friction enhancements it now pumps out 200kW of power and 600Nm of torque - the former between 3250-4250rpm, the latter between 1500-3000rpm.
It's a handy increase over the previous model's 180kW and 550Nm, but more significantly for the majority of owners it now consumes just 5.9 l/100km on the combined cycle.
That's notably less than the outgoing Q7 3.0 TDI's 7.4 l/00km average, part of which is attributable to the engine stop-start system.
Thanks to a range of lightweight engineering measures, the new 3.0 TDI motor weighs in at 190kg. That, coupled with the 20kg lighter driveline and the use of lighter construction in the body, means the new Q7 weighs 240kg less than before.
And that aids performance as well as fuel economy. With less mass to move and an eight-speed gearbox taking drive to all four wheels, the Q7 can accelerate to 100km/h in a hot hatch-rivalling 6.5 seconds.
Electric power steering is now standard, while the suspension features a higher usage of aluminium in order to save weight and improve handling.
Adaptive air suspension is optional, as is four-wheel steering. 19-inch alloys are the standard rolling stock.
A traditional 8.3-inch infotainment display takes up the normal position at the top of the centre stack (and can retract when not in use), and is controlled by the latest evolution of Audi's MMI infotainment interface.
With the usual dial selector now supplemented by a large trackpad set into the centre console the system is said to be easier and more intuitive to control, with greater emphasis on gesture inputs.
Seven seats are standard-fit with the third row electrically retractable. The second row features a more even 35/30/35 split to improve comfort for the middle passenger.
Four option packages are offered - three S Line exterior styling packages and a driver assistance package - and high-tech features like a head-up display and LED headlamps are optional.
The following features are standard on the 2016 Audi Q7:
- Parking sensors, park assist,
- hill descent control
- hill hold assist
- rear cross traffic alert
- blind spot monitoring
- rain sensing wipers
- Dusk sensing bi-xenon headlamps
- Keyless entry and ignition
- 12.3-inch LCD "instrument panel
- Dual-zone climate control
- Leather upholstery
- Power-adjustable front seats with memory on driver's side
- Electrically-folding third row seats
- 10-speaker audio system with single-disc AM/FM/DAB+/CD/DVD/SD headunit
- USB audio inputs, 10GB onboard music storage
- Bluetooth phone and audio integration
- Satellite navigation with 8.3-inch colour display and touchpad interface
The new Audi Q7 is available for order now, though customer deliveries won't commence until September. The range consists of only one model for now.
- Audi Q7 3.0 TDI: $103,900
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