Expert Review - Audi Q7 4M (2015-Present)
1 January 1970
Going from being one of the heaviest cars in the segment to one of the lightest is no easy task, but Audi has pulled it off with its Q7 - a gist of the model's extreme makeover from one generation to the next. A behemoth from the outside, the Q7 does fall short of spaciousness inside, but score top marks for quality, performance, features and safety.
The Q7 may look like a behemoth, but don't be fooled - this two-tonne SUV can perform the century sprint in 6.3 seconds. All thanks to a 3.0 litre TFSI supercharged V6 engine that delivers 333 hp and 440 Nm of torque. On paper, this Q7 will outperform a BMW X5 xDrive35i. It's only vice is the Volvo XC90 plug-in hybrid, which offers 407 hp and 640 Nm of torque.
Ride & Handling
The Q7 only scores a 6/10 for this writer because of a standard-included air suspension that just doesn't inspire the necessary confidence to drive this SUV fast. Thankfully, that's not at all what you should be doing in a Q7. Manouvering the big Q7 around tight spaces is easy, thanks to good surrounding visibility, and a 360-degree surround-view camera.
I wouldn't go as far to call the Q7's levels of comfort poor, nor would I say it was the best. The four-corner air suspension system has several modes, ranging from Comfort to Dynamic to choose from, but they were all too soft. While this makes riding over bumps easy, taking a corner at any kind of speed yields a lot of unsettling lateral roll.
With a Euro NCAP Advanced award under its belt, there's little to fault the Q7 for when it comes to safety. Locally, the Q7 features eight airbags, Isofix mounts on all seats except the front and front passenger seats, hill descent control, as well as ESC, ASR, EDL, ABS and EBD.
To be brutally honest, there's little point in buying a Q7 for its ability to seat seven people. A child may appreciate the additional air vents in rear-most seats, but leg room is impossible. The middle row seats are sufficient, but far from class-leading, likewise for drivers. The Q7 could learn a thing or two from the Volvo XC90 in this department.
By no fault of its own, the Q7's proposition in the local market may not be the most appealing, thanks to the arrival of the tax-exempted Volvo XC90 which knocks off more than RM100k from the Audi's price. Save for that point, the Audi Q7 is priced competitively against the BMW X5 and Mercedes-Benz GLE and offers equally competitive kit as standard.