Audi Q7 SQ7 TFSI Quattro Black Edition 5dr Tiptronic
Obsessed with driving on the doorhandles? A Q7 probably isn’t for you. This is a proper full-sized SUV, and if you’re using it as intended – carrying people and many things – then attacking a roundabout at ten tenths will only result in requiring the use of a wet’n’dry vacuum cleaner. What the Q7 does do perfectly well is cruise around hauling humans and stuff in comfort.
All UK cars are equipped with adjustable and adaptive air suspension as standard that helps provide maximum waftiness. You get the familiar Audi Drive Select controller to play with too, comprising many pre-sets including auto, comfort, dynamic, off-road, allroad and user-chooser individual. Honestly? You’ll probably play with the ride height when you first get the car and then leave it in Auto.
As ever, the various modes stiffen or slacken, raise or lower the suspension a few millimetres to ease your way across whatever necessary. It might not be an off-roader, but it’ll manage a wet field or two – there’s a self-locking centre diff if things get slippy, and generally the Q7 just gets on with things.
If you do happen to drive like a loon, it’s all competent rather than particularly encouraging: excellent body control slathered over surprising grip, grip that washes progressively away when you get over-committed. The steering mumbles and the brakes produce zero feel, but both contribute enough anaesthesia to be able to drive very smoothly should you wish. Which is probably the point. This is genuinely a very nice place to bimble around inside, quiet, ultra-calm and spacious.
Vision is good for such a big car, although the C-pillar blindspot can be mighty in some situations (unsurprisingly), and there’s an optional four-wheel steer system that can help reduce the turning circle. Handy for breaking free from your parking space outside the school gates.
Both the 50 TDI and 55 TFSI have more than enough urge. The more powerful diesel seems to suit the Q7 a little more, the deeper well of torque (443lb ft) lower down the rev-range gets all that bulk on the move with just a tad more ease.
Very, very heavy is the simple answer. Audi quotes an unladen weight of 2,450kg with the added batteries and electric motor on board. You can feel that extra mass every time you turn the steering wheel, and with different levels of regen available based on what mode you’re in it can be tricky to modulate the brake pedal smoothly.
It’s certainly not slow, though. The 0-62mph sprint can be dispatched in 5.9 seconds if you’re so inclined, but your best bet is to be as light on the throttle as possible to try and eke out the claimed 30 miles of all-electric range. The transition between electric and petrol power is smooth and silent though, and the eight-speed auto copes well. It’s a very good plug-in hybrid system, as you’d expect from Audi at this price point, although the size of the Q7 means you’ll likely be in the mid-thirties mpg for overall mpg.
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