2017 Audi Q7 Preview

Christian Wardlaw | Jan 08, 2015
  • Smaller on the outside, bigger on the inside
  • Large luxury SUV with 3 rows of seats
  • Lower center of mass, more than 700 lbs. lighter
  • Claimed 25% improvement in average fuel efficiency
  • Turbocharged 4-cylinder, turbo-diesel V-6, supercharged V-6 engines
  • Standard 8-speed automatic transmission, Quattro all-wheel drive
  • Planned plug-in hybrid model with diesel engine
  • Next-generation infotainment and safety systems


The 2017 Audi Q7 is completely redesigned, a luxury SUV with seating for up to 8 passengers. Setting new design, engineering, and technology standards for Audi, the Q7 sets the stage for a new generation of vehicles from the automaker.

Exterior Features

Shorter and narrower than the model it replaces, yet larger on the inside for people and cargo, the new 2017 Audi Q7 employs a significant amount of ultra-high-strength steel and aluminum construction to shave more than 700 lbs. of weight compared with the 2015 Q7.

When equipped with what is expected to be the most popular engine--the supercharged 3.0-liter V-6--the new Q7 weighs less than 4,350 lbs., according to Audi. At the same time, the new Q7 is structurally stronger and stiffer, the automaker says. Aerodynamics are improved, too, the SUV's coefficient of drag now measuring 0.32 cd.

Matte-aluminum exterior trim is standard, as well as xenon HID headlights and 18-in. aluminum wheels. The standard power rear liftgate can be upgraded to hands-free operation, and an available S-line package gives the new Q7 a sportier look. Audi says it will offer wheels up to 21 in. in diameter as well as LED or matrix LED headlights.

Interior Features

A driver-oriented, wrap-around cabin design creates what Audi calls "cultivated elegance" with "best-in-class aero-acoustics" for maximum quietude. Two-tone dashboard color schemes, wood or metallic trim, LED interior lighting, and new switchgear with a reduced button and knob count help to provide what Audi says is a lighter look and feel to the Q7's cabin, and buyers can select from seven different color combinations.

In standard format, the Q7 seats 8 people in 3 rows of seats. The second-row seating is comprised of three individual chairs with up to 4.3 in. of seat travel to help make everyone comfortable. The optional individual second-row seats are certified as child safety seats. No matter which configuration is selected, the second-row seats tip and slide forward to make for easier third-row ingress and egress.

Optional Features

Buyers can upgrade the Q7's interior with premium leather, extended leather, an Alcantara headliner, and Audi Exclusive décor selections. Climate controlled seats, front sport seats, and front contour seats with 18-way adjustment and massage are also available, along with 4-zone climate control, panoramic sunroof, rear window blinds, and power door closers. Buyers in cold climates might want the available heated windshield, and a head-up display is also available.

Under the Hood

Audi expects to offer the new Q7 with a turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine generating more than 250 horsepower. Despite what you might read elsewhere, Audi's press release clearly states that this engine "is planned primarily for the Asian markets and the U.S.A."

The supercharged, 3.0-liter V-6 engine is expected to be the more popular choice. It makes more than 330 horsepower, accelerates the Q7 to 60 mph in a claimed 6.1 seconds, and Audi says it demonstrates a 28% increase in fuel economy.

The available 3.0-liter, TDI turbo-diesel engine is also more efficient for 2016, improving by 23% in terms of fuel economy, Audi says. It makes more than 270 horsepower, and accelerates the Q7 to 60 mph in 6.3 seconds.

Audi will also offer a Q7 E-tron model equipped with a plug-in hybrid diesel powertrain. Power estimates in excess of 370 horsepower and 515 lb.-ft. of torque produce acceleration to 60 mph in just 6 seconds, and Audi says the Lithium-ion battery provides nearly 35 miles of electric-only range.

All 2017 Q7s will have an 8-speed automatic transmission with shift paddles, and a Quattro all-wheel-drive (AWD) system with a self-locking center differential and torque-vectoring technology. Under normal conditions, power is split 40:60 between the front and rear wheels, but up to 70% can go to the front wheels and up to 85% can flow to the rear wheels, Audi says.

Electric steering is new, and includes all-wheel steering for easier low-speed maneuverability and greater high-speed stability. Available Trailer Assistant technology makes it easier to reverse a Q7 when a trailer is attached to its optional hitch.

Audi Drive Select technology is standard, and offers up to seven different driving modes when the Q7 is equipped with the optional adaptive air suspension: Efficiency, Comfort, Auto, Dynamic, Individual, Allroad, and Lift/Offroad. Hill-start assist and hill-descent control systems are standard, and the Q7 supplies up to 9.3 in. of ground clearance with the optional air suspension.


Audi will include new Pre-Sense City technology as standard equipment on the new Q7, a system that warns of potential collisions at low speeds and automatically applies the vehicle's brakes if necessary. If a crash is unavoidable, new multi-collision brake assist keeps the SUV from colliding with other vehicles following the initial impact.

Additional safety features are available in three different option packages. The Parking package installs park-assist sensors, a surround-view camera, and a park-assist system with autonomous steering for parallel and perpendicular parking maneuvers.

The City package installs a cross-traffic alert system, exit-warning system, and the aforementioned Trailer Assistant steering, as well as Audi Side Assist, Audi Pre-Sense Rear, and Parking System Plus technologies.

The Tour package installs adaptive cruise control with Traffic Jam Assistant and stop-and-go capability, Audi Active Lane Assist, and Audi Pre-Sense Front autonomous braking.

Notably, all six of the Q7's rear seating positions feature child-seat mounting points, which, theoretically, means this Audi can carry six kids in car seats. The Q7's Audi Connect system also provides new Emergency Calling and Service, free of charge for the first 10 years of ownership.

A Night Vision Assistant system is also available, and Audi promises Avoidance Assistant and Turning Assistant autonomous steering systems shortly after the 2017 Q7 launches.


In addition to the long list of safety systems, the new Q7 features next-generation Audi Multi-Media Interface (MMI) technology with touchpad control, gesture control, natural speech control, acoustic and haptic feedback, and search with intelligent suggestions technology. Audi Connect continues to supply Google Earth and Google Street View imagery, and the system's navigation maps can be updated via download thanks to the LTE Wi-Fi hotspot connection.

Connect a smartphone via the USB port to access Pandora, Spotify, WhatsApp, and other mobile applications, or opt for Audi Phone Box technology for full smartphone integration via Google Android Auto and Apple CarPlay platforms, as well as an inductive charging pad.

Audi Virtual Cockpit technology installs an available 12.3-in. TFT instrumentation display screen with Classic, Infotainment, and configurable Custom display views, and Audi offers premium 3-D audio systems for the Q7, one of which includes 23 speakers and 1,920 watts of power.

A new Audi Tablet rear-seat entertainment system debuts, too, equipping the Q7 with removable, Android-based, 10.1-in., tablet-style screens, each featuring Google Play access, an HD camera, and 32GB of storage. Surf the Internet via Audi Connect's Wi-Fi service, or remove the screens and take them with you when you exit the Q7.

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