Review: 2017 Audi Q7

– Cleveland, Ohio

Can you believe it’s been 10 years since Audi first debuted the Q7? In all that time, we’ve never gotten an all-new, clean-sheet design until now. This new Q7, though, joins a group of well-heeled competitors that haven’t been standing around twiddling their turn signal stalks over the last decade. They include Volvo’s hot new XC90 and the recently renamed Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class, as well as a few Japanese luxury competitors that would prefer not to be forgotten. Fortunately, Audi has armed the Q7 with enough tech to make NASA jealous, but we’re not sure that’s enough to place it firmly in front of its three-rowed cohorts.

Pros

  • The Q7’s 3.0-liter supercharged V6 makes 333 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque, but it feels more powerful than those numbers suggest. Maybe it’s the Q7’s relatively light sub-5,000-pound curb weight or the fact that peak torque arrives at a low 2,500 rpm. It could also be the eight-speed automatic transmission’s imperceptible shifts always keeping the engine in its sweet spot. Regardless, power is always there when needed and it comes on strong and silently.
  • The Q7 stays more composed in turns than most large, high-riding crossovers. It’s tighter, more-controlled handling means things don’t get scary when you take an onramp too fast or cut a corner a little too tightly. That said, the ride is still plenty comfortable, even over rough roads. Of the four different driving modes available – Comfort, Auto, Offroad, and Dynamic – o...