The 2016 Audi Q7 gets sharp new styling while the overall SUV is lighter by a hefty margin courtesy of aluminium in its construction and is being offered only with a diesel engine for now.
The Q7 turned out to be an extremely popular model not only in India but globally as well in Audi’s stable and has been on sale for almost nine years now. Nevertheless, the new generation bowed in globally in December last year and exactly a year after its official unveil, the Ingolstadt carmaker’s flagship SUV has made it to the Indian shores with prices starting at Rs. 72 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi).
Based on the new MLB platform, the new generation Audi Q7 is 325 kgs lighter thanks to the use of aluminium in its construction and chassis, while also being shorter and narrower than the outgoing model. The wheelbase is now longer at 2990 mm maximising interior space with the distance between the first and the second row increased by 21 mm. In terms of styling, the curves have been chucked in favour of a more angular design language in-line with other models in the automaker’s stable and gets a single-frame grille, sharply styled headlamp cluster, new LED tail lights and twin exhausts.
Inside the cabin, the 2016 Audi Q7 gets contemporary and stylish looking dashboard and features a host of tech including the 12.3-inch all-digital TFT instrument cluster, 3-spoke multi-function steering wheel and a new knob shifter. The luxury SUV comes with a Bang & Olufsen surround sound system, new Audi MMI, 8.3-inch touchpad with handwriting recognition, Audi Connect, Android Auto or Apple CarPlay options, Android tablets for rear seat entertainment and a whole lot more.
Prominent safety features include lane departure warning, cruise control, Audi Pre-Sense City and much more. The SUV scored a full 5-stars on the Euro NCAP crash tests. Under the hood, the India spec new generation Audi Q7 is offered only with a diesel heart, so power comes from a 3.0-litre V6 oil burner tuned for 272 PS and 600 Nm of torque, paired to an 8-speed Tip-Tronic automatic transmission with the famed quattro AWD system on offer. 0-100 km/hr comes up in 6.3 seconds and the Q7 has an electronically-limited top speed of 250 km/hr.
Surprisingly, the 2016 Audi Q7 is also 26 percent more fuel efficient than its predecessor despite more power while also being easy on the environment. The automaker is locally assembling the luxury SUV like the older version which keeps the prices competitive despite the marginal hike. The Q7 also marks Audi’s last launch for the year as part of some very interesting products that were introduced in the country. That said, competition is in abundance now in the luxury SUV segment with the Mercedes GL-Class (GLS), BMW X5 and Volvo XC90.
2016 Audi Q7 Prices (ex-showroom, Delhi)
* Q7 Premium Plus – Rs. 72 lakhs
* Q7 Technology – Rs. 77.5 lakhs
We drove the new Audi Q7 is Switzerland earlier this year