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Old 4th July 2016, 16:30   #1
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Default Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

The Audi Q7 has been launched in India at a price of between Rs. 72.00 - 77.50 lakhs (ex-Delhi).

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-aaa_4767.jpg

It was the Audi Q7 that kicked off the premium SUV segment in India for Audi. The car also helped the company build its brand name in the country. The outgoing Q7 was huge in size - over 5 meters in length and had solid road presence.

In order to shed weight for the sake of on-road dynamics and efficiency, the 2016 Q7 has slightly shrunk in size. At 5,052 mm in length, it is still huge, but the new edgy styling makes it look a little smaller than the old car. The good news is, the new car has shed 300 kgs of weight! Just because of the drop in weight, now even the 3L, V6 diesel Q7 gets the 45 TDI badge; in the older Q7, the more powerful 4.2L, V8 Diesel wore the 45 TDI badge. Read about Audi's Dynamic Badging here.

For now, there are no petrol variants sold in India. There isn't a smaller diesel either, which means the Audi Q7 cannot be sold in the Delhi NCR region. Interestingly, its chief competitor - the new Volvo XC90 comes with a diesel engine smaller than 2,000 cc and can thus have an unhindered run in Delhi NCR - India's biggest market. In other states, the Q7 competes with the Mercedes GL-Class (soon to be renamed GLS Class), BMW X5 and of course, the Volvo XC90. Its German competition is powered by similar 3L, 6-cylinder diesel engines.

The styling comes as a shocking change. While the cleaner straight lines look fresher and more modern, it now looks too plain Jane. The new car isn’t as appealing or butch as the bulbous older one, which had massive street presence. Now, the Q7 has more of an 'estate car on steroids' kind of look, especially if you choose the Dynamic drive mode, in which it rides low. The front end is dominated by a huge grille, which has an aluminium finish. The bright aluminium highlights look far classier than the chrome units we see on all other cars. Even the regular diesel variant gets massive air dams on either side of the bumper and the fog lamps are now integrated in the headlamp clusters. LED headlamps with LED daytime lamps are standard on the new car. The longitudinally mounted engine layout means the bonnet is still long in proportion to the whole body. The glass area is similar to the old car with the trademark Audi Q series - one long continuous glass area, more prominent in darker colours due to the aluminium highlights. Even the rear end gets recognised instantly as that of a Q7, but gone are the angular lines.

255 mm wide tyres mounted on 19-inch rims are standard. The car features adaptive air suspension all round with variable ride height according to various drives modes and speed.

There's going to be an SQ7 version soon, with a hybrid turbocharger (featuring an electric motor and two conventional turbos) making 435 BHP. The claimed 0 to 100 km/h time for the car is under 5 seconds. It will also feature de-coupling electric anti-roll bars.

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-01aaa_4709.jpg

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-03aaa_4737.jpg

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-06aaa_4751.jpg

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-09aaa_4776.jpg

This is the ride height in the Dynamic mode, or even in the Individual mode where Dynamic is selected for the suspension settings. The other photographs have Offroad mode selected, hence the much higher ride height:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-13dsc00326.jpg

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-14dsc00327.jpg

DRL's in action. LED headlamps are standard. LED foglamps are integrated in the headlamp clusters. They sit at the bottom of the clusters:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-01dsc00274.jpg

Front parking camera is mounted just below the Audi badge:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-03dsc00272.jpg

One of the many Quattro badges on the car:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-04dsc00275.jpg

Side parking sensors on the bumper - the ones on the LHS are also used for the Park assist function:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-06dsc00277.jpg

ORVMs get integrated turn indicators:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-07dsc00278.jpg

Outside portion is convex for wider coverage:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-08dsc00279.jpg

There is a dedicated space to latch filler cap:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-10dsc00281.jpg

Does not take biodiesel:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-11dsc00282.jpg

19-inch Pirelli Scorpion Verde:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-12dsc00293.jpg

Quattro branding on the sides:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-13dsc00294.jpg

New Audi nomenclature. Now even the 3L, V6 diesel gets the 45 TDI badge. Rear foglamps and reversing lamps are housed in the bumper:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-15dsc00284.jpg

A closer look at the tail-lamp cluster:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-17dsc00291.jpg

The rear camera is mounted above the number plate:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-19dsc00287.jpg

Lots of plastic cladding on the sides:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-21dsc00292.jpg

255/55 R19 rubber - a good compromise for our roads:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-22dsc00338.jpg

Large scoops look unusual:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-24dsc00339.jpg

The external antenna also helps with mobile phone reception:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-25dsc00289.jpg

Aluminium finish roof rails look classy on this dark coloured car:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-27dsc00324.jpg

Typical Euro windshield washers:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-28dsc00300.jpg

Last edited by Aditya : 8th July 2016 at 09:51.
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Old 4th July 2016, 16:30   #2
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The interiors are a big step up compared to the old car. The new Audi design theme not only looks two generations fresher, but also the choice of the switchgear and aluminium buttons lend a premium feel to it. The colour combination of the interiors is brown and beige - the top part is dark brown while the lower part is beige in colour, with some wooden inserts and brushed aluminium textures highlighted by bright aluminium finish lines, which look richer than chrome.

The dashboard is mounted low, which helps with good front visibility. The steering wheel has the familiar Audi design, but with loads of buttons on it. The speedometer console is an LCD display. Gone are the old, large analogue meters. They have been replaced by this LCD screen, which has virtual analog meters that look like the actual ones. This screen displays a large amount of information - everything from trip data to navigation maps, which can be browsed through using the controls on the steering wheel. The good thing is, the temperature and fuel gauge get independent displays on either side of the LCD. The visibility, even on a bright sunny afternoon is excellent. Even when using the GPS navigation, the directions can be displayed at various zoom levels.

The center console houses the HVAC control and a few assist systems like the Automatic Parking Assist and Hill Descent Control among others. There no buttons for the AWD system - the only related controls are either the Offroad drive mode in drive select modes, or the ESP, which can be used in Offroad mode. The ESP system has three modes - pressing the button briefly will activate the Offroad mode and pressing it longer than 3 seconds will switch off the ESP system.

The night vision assist, which has pedestrian and animal detection features is not available in India. Even the radar-based adaptive cruise control is not available in India. The cruise control system is of a regular type with a speed limit function.

The small center screen on the top is mainly used for the MMI display. It’s not a touch screen and is placed far from both the driver and the passenger to be of any use even if it had the touchscreen functionality. The MMI system is controlled through the knobs and multiple buttons near the gear lever.

There are multiple places to select the drive modes - dedicated buttons on the top of the AC console, through the MMI interface and the star button on the steering wheel.

The input for GPS navigation is through gestures on the MMI pad. It’s a difficult and time-consuming process. In comparison, the newer touch-based systems are more convenient. Unlike the Volvo XC90, the maps are 3D type, which look cool and realistic. The maps display in the meter console ensures that there is no more looking at the center screen while driving. The Q7 sold in India does not come with SIM slot, hence there are no real-time traffic updates, smart navigation, and the GPS system is offline only.

The front seats are large and accommodating, but the side bolstering is not prominent as it is in some sport seats. Even the squab is pretty large and with the twin side seat height adjustment the under-thigh support can be adjusted as per preference. Surprisingly, either heated or cooled seats are not available in the Indian car. Even the much cheaper Skoda Superb from the same VW group gets them.

The rear seats have smaller squab, which I also found to be lacking in under-thigh support in comparison to the sedans. The backrest though is large and comfortable. The recline angle is adjustable, but the seats do not completely recline. The adjusters for the middle row are not electric type. All 3 portions of the middle row can be independently reclined. Even the middle passenger gets a proper three-point seatbelt. The middle row seats do not slide. The middle armrest is just average in terms of comfort. The legroom however, is generous. Even with a six-footer driving with his seat reclined more than normal, another six-footer seated behind will have no cause to complain. There are no infotainment system controls for the middle row passengers, they just get 2 split climate control zones.

The last row seats are extremely tight on space. Even short adults will struggle to fit in. More than the legroom, the foot space is a concern. The last row of seats are electrically foldable. The Mercedes-Benz GL-Class and Land Rover Discovery 4, in comparison, have full size third row seats, which can accommodate even tall adults.

There is space for a few bags behind the last row of seats. One of my biggest concerns for this car is the lack of space for spare tyre. For an SUV like this, which the owners will use for touring, a full size spare tyre would have been much appreciated, but what the Q7 comes with is a space saver spare tyre, which is mounted on the top of one of the last row seats. It takes up at least 40% of the luggage space. To top it all, it is stored in deflated state and has to be inflated with a supplied inflator that is stored in the boot. Removing it is a time-consuming task. The tyre is almost impossible to be stored again on your own after deflating it again.

If you judge the build of the car by the feel of closing the doors and associated thuds, you'd be surprised with the new Q7. Even after the 300 kg weight loss, it feels solid like a tank. This isn't the case with the cheaper cars from VW group like the Skoda Octavia, where the build feels nowhere as solid as the old-generation car.

The sunroof covers almost all of roof till the second row. I observed the heat transferring through the sunroof even with the curtain on. The air-conditioner is good enough for such large car, but it clearly is not the freezer that it should be.

Low set dashboard helps front visibility even without raising seat height. With the new Audi theme, it is a big step up compared to the old generation Q7. Interior theme is brown + beige. Some wood inserts, a lot of brushed aluminium panels and bright aluminium highlights:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-00101aaa_4847.jpg

There are lots of buttons on the steering wheel for controlling a lot functions. There is even a custom assignable button. Once you get to the buttons layout, it is intuitive to use. For the majority of the functions, I did not have to search the buttons over and over again. A big thumbs up for ease and convenience:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-00703aaa_4883.jpg

Small paddle shifters mounted behind the steering wheel. Cruise control stalk is below the indicators stalk:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-036023dsc00137.jpg

The large flat console near the gearbox looks fabulous, the wide and short gear lever is good place to rest your hands on:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-039025dsc00139.jpg

Wide and Low gear lever, ergonomic to operate. Personally I prefer a Mercedes like stalk behind steering wheel, it help to free a lot of space on the center console:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-042028dsc00142.jpg

Beautifully finished key with a lot of aluminium:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-011004dsc00116.jpg

A look at the front doorpad:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-018010dsc00124.jpg

Two seat memory positions can be stored. When locked, a red light comes on. The aluminium door handle feels solid and premium::
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-012003dsc00119.jpg

The buttons in the last row are for child locks. All four windows have auto up/down and anti-pinch. ORVMs have defogging function:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-013005dsc00118.jpg

Boot release located on the driver side door pad. This is the only way to release the boot once the engine is started. The button on the remote won't work with the engine started:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-014006dsc00120.jpg

Bose 3D audio is standard:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-015007dsc00121.jpg

Warning lamps on all the doors:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-016008dsc00122.jpg

Though both the front seats are electrically adjustable, only the driver's seat gets memory function. Even the steering wheel is electrically adjustable and gets raised as soon as the engine is turned off for easy entry/exit. But, the steering position cannot be linked to the memory function of the driver's seat:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-020012dsc00126.jpg

Sunroof is huge, with a large opening:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-02218aaa_4843.jpg

Split glass on front door:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-025013dsc00127.jpg

Lots of Aluminium panels, even aluminium used for highlights:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-027015dsc00129.jpg

All the tyre sizes and recommended pressure chart:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-030017dsc00131.jpg

The wiper stalk is mounted on the right. The control in the middle is to set the sensitivity of the auto wipers:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-044030dsc00144.jpg

Buttons for drive modes, ESP, hazard lights, Auto Parking Assist, parking cameras, downhill assist and switch to tuck away the LCD screen into the dashboard:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-048034dsc00149.jpg

Controls for the MMI system. I find the input system too bothersome - stuff like entering an address for navigation requires a lot of effort:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-049035dsc00150.jpg

The front center armrests can be independently adjusted for length, but they share a common height adjustment, which I felt had a limited range:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-058044dsc00157.jpg

Armrest opens to reveal a phone box. It has two USB charging points and Aux-in socket. The maximum charging speed is 5W (5Vx1A) from the pre-fast charging era and is extremely slow by today's standards:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-054040dsc00155.jpg

The phone box can help to make calls using the external aerial of the car. Use of the external aerial helps in reducing radiations in the car and also ensures better reception quality. For this to work, the phone must be connected via Bluetooth:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-056042dsc00348.jpg

The Phone box can also be used to charge the phone wirelessly, Qi compatible phones are supported. More on Qi standard:

If the remote battery is exhausted, the car can be started by placing the key in this marked area:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-057043dsc00156.jpg

Even though the handbrake is electronic, it can be used for emergency braking just like the manual handbrake system in other cars:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-060046dsc00159.jpg

There are two sunvisors on both the sides:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-068054dsc00329.jpg

The IRVM sports a new design, which is common in all the newer Audi/VW cars. It is similar to the one seen in the VW Passat, displayed at the 2016 Auto Expo:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-069055dsc00330.jpg

The ORVMs are day/night type:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-070056dsc00331.jpg

Engine can be started with the key in your pocket. In events of emergency, the engine can be switched off while moving by pressing the "START ENGINE STOP" button twice in quick succession or by holding it for longer than two seconds:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-112098dsc00193.jpg

Last edited by Aditya : 4th July 2016 at 16:35.
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Old 4th July 2016, 16:30   #3
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Just like all other Audi Quattro cars, a Quattro badge sits on the passenger side of the dashboard:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-076062dsc00340.jpg

The lining on all the panels is soft fabric-like, similar to the roof lining:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-077063dsc00271.jpg

Automatic climate control system has four independent zones:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-081067dsc00163.jpg

All the adjustment options offered are displayed on the MMI:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-087073dsc00169.jpg

A total of six drive modes are available:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-088074dsc00170.jpg

Audio settings can be adjusted:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-090076dsc00172.jpg

GPS Navigation system is offered as well:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-092078dsc00174.jpg

The instrument console displays various functions including navigation:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-093079dsc00175.jpg

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-102088dsc00184.jpg

Like most other European cars, the indicator stalk is mounted on the left:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-105091dsc00186.jpg

The cruise control system also has a speed limit function. When set, the vehicle will not exceed the set speed limit. Adaptive cruise control is not available for India:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-106092dsc00187.jpg

All the vents have air volume controls, they can be shut completely:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-113099dsc00194.jpg

On the passenger side of the dashboard, the large vents which look like one huge vent can be used like regular A/C vents:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-115101dsc00197.jpg

Glovebox can be locked. It is cooled and felt lined:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-120106dsc00209.jpg

Two SD card slots in the glovebox at the usual place where CD changers used to be in last generation German cars. There is no SIM card slot for Q7 sold in India:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-127113dsc00210.jpg

The foam looks cheap on such an expensive car:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-131117dsc00215.jpg

Another exposed ugly bit:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-132118dsc00216.jpg

Last edited by Aditya : 4th July 2016 at 16:36.
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Old 4th July 2016, 16:30   #4
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Middle row seats folded flat:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-137123dsc00299.jpg

Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-13814aaa_4813.jpg

That's me (6 feet 3 inches tall) sitting behind a 6 footer:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-133119dsc00109.jpg

That's "me behind me". The Q7 is one of the few cars that passes this test :
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-13912aaa_4831.jpg

Rear doors have manual pull up type sun shades:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-135121dsc00297.jpg

Middle row A/C controls, with split zones:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-140124dsc00111.jpg

The floor hump not as tall and large as the Euro sedans, but still pretty intrusive:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-143127dsc00260.jpg

Total of four vents for middle row passengers:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-145129dsc00261.jpg

All cabin lights are LED type:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-148132dsc00264.jpg

In the third row, even for the short adults, this seat will be extremely uncomfortable. Children anyways should be seated in child seats:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-18111aaa_4819.jpg

No space for your feet:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-18010aaa_4816.jpg

Bottle holder/cupholder for last row:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-179161dsc00251.jpg

With the second and third row of seats folded flat. There is no dedicated space for the space saver spare tyre (deflated), so it is installed in the boot. Takes up a lot of space, renders one of the third row seats useless and is extremely difficult to remove and almost impossible to fix again on your own:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-15015aaa_4815.jpg

Flimsy hinge for under-floor tools storage:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-151133dsc00218.jpg

A look at the tools provided. Most of them are for spare tyre removal and installation:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-152134dsc00219.jpg

Hooks for space management in the boot:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-153135dsc00220.jpg

The space saver tyre is stored in deflated form, it has to be filled up with air with this compressor before installation:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-154136dsc00222.jpg

The boot has a loading button, which lowers the rear suspension making it easier to load luggage:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-155137dsc00223.jpg

There is space for a few bags even with all the seats erected:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-156138dsc00225.jpg

Last row of seats are folded electrically:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-157139dsc00226.jpg

One 12V power outlet here as well:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-158140dsc00229.jpg

Two LED lamps in the boot:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-159141dsc00231.jpg

The frame for mounting the space saver spare tyre is attached to the chassis:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-162144dsc00234.jpg

Spare tyre is stored in deflated condition. It is impossible to pack again here:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-163145dsc00235.jpg

Pull this strap to flip the headrest down:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-169151dsc00239.jpg

Seatbelt for last row:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-170152dsc00240.jpg

Electric controls for last row of seats are located next to the middle row as well:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-171153dsc00243.jpg

Middle row seat flips forward, for entry into last row:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-174156dsc00246.jpg

Lever to flip the middle row seat forward:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-176158dsc00248.jpg

The tailgate opens and closes electrically. Press this button to close the tailgate:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-178160dsc00250.jpg

Last edited by Aditya : 4th July 2016 at 16:37.
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Old 4th July 2016, 16:31   #5
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The new Q7 is powered by a 2,967 cc, V6 diesel engine that makes 245 BHP @ 2,910-4,500 rpm and 600 Nm of torque @ 1,500-3,000 rpm. This 3L diesel mill is mated to the familiar 8-speed torque converter type ZF 8HP transmission. Power is transmitted to all four wheels via a Torsen full time all-wheel drive system, with a self-locking center differential and torque vectoring. The engine is mounted longitudinally just like in rear-wheel drive cars.

These specifications are superior to the Q7ís chief competitor - the Volvo XC90, which comes with a 2L, 4-cylinder engine, mounted transversely, mated to an Aisin 8-speed automatic gearbox with power being transmitted through a front-wheel drive-based part time Haldex AWD system. While the BMW X5 uses the same gearbox, it is powered by an inline 6-cylinder diesel engine and gets a full time AWD system. Mercedes-Benz is all set to update the GL-Class and rename it as the GLS-Class. It is again powered by a 3L, V6 diesel engine, but will get Mercedes' in-house 9-speed (9G-Tronic) automatic transmission.

The ZF 8 is not a new introduction to the Q7. The earlier car had this gearbox in some variants post 2012. Even the smaller Q5 was launched with this transmission mated to the 2L TFSI engine, while the 7 Speed DSG was used with the 3L TDI engine.

As soon as you fire up the engine, the first thing that comes to your mind is the fabulously controlled NVH. The engine is absolutely silent at any engine speed except when close to the redline. For a diesel there is complete silence inside the cabin and even outside the cabin, it does not make a racket and is instantly recognisable as a V6. The NVH levels are so low that people with lesser experience will surely mistake it for a petrol. The ZF 8 transmission does a wonderful job of masking the engine's turbo lag. The Q7 starts pulling almost immediately. Unlike the 7-speed DSG, there is no initial lag. By 1,500 rpm the engine anyways is in its peak torque zone.

In the Comfort mode, the gearbox shifts up early and smoothly, in fact, a bit too early just like the old DSG. Even the engine responses are laid back. This is the perfect mode for relaxed driving and highway cruising. The 300 kg weight loss is instantly apparent, and the car surely is worthy of the 45 TDI badge. The acceleration is fast and speedo needle climbs to insane speeds in no time. But the power delivery is smooth and linear. There is no brutal kick in the back, it just smoothly flies on the wave of torque.

Switch to Dynamic mode and the engine response, even in the regular D mode, is much sharper and the car gets instantly more rewarding to drive. Sometimes it feels a little bit too aggressive in city traffic, but otherwise, this is the mode you will want to stay in all day long. The fast performance does not come at a cost of fuel economy. In fact, the fuel efficiency is rated at 14.75 km/l by ARAI in its standard testing cycle. The tall gearing ensures the revvs stay low while cruising (100 km/h in 8th gear = 1,300 rpm). For the Delhi - Jaipur drive in slow morning traffic and some open road bursts the car's MID showed almost 14 km/l, which is an excellent figure for a 5 meter long SUV with such brutal performance. Audi claims a 0-100 kph acceleration time of 7.1 seconds for the car.

Engine is mounted longitudinally:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-29dsc00301.jpg

ECU is mounted as high as it can be in the engine bay:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-30dsc00302.jpg

Coolant tank:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-31dsc00303.jpg

Refill for windshield washer fluid:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-32dsc00304.jpg

One strut supports the bonnet, which is not as heavy:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-40dsc00307.jpg

I found the ride quality in Comfort mode a bit uncomfortable. Donít get me wrong, it is the softest suspension setting with a slightly higher ride height and the suspension absorbs sharp undulations well in this mode, but the car has a floaty and slightly bouncy feel to it, which I found annoying. Surprisingly, the Q7 rides nicest in the stiffer, tuned for handling Dynamic mode. The ride remains flat on most surfaces and does not crash badly into the potholes. At highway speeds, the ride is much more composed in this mode.

In the Dynamic mode, even the steering gains some weight. Although you know it is artificial, it feels good around the bends, where it gets reasonably heavy. The new steering is light - just like all other Audi cars, but it is decently quick and direct.

Thanks to the lost weight, the new Q7 does not feel like a bulky SUV around the bends. It is good fun to throw around, but in the typical Audi fashion, there is not much feel. It surely is no Porsche Cayenne or BMW X5 in that respect. The new found agility defies the size. This is something old Q7 owners will have to drive to believe it. After driving the car for 2 days, the only time I was aware of its large size was at the time of taking tight U-turns. The rest of the time, it felt like a smaller crossover.

There are 2 other drive modes as well - one is Offroad, where the car gets raised by a couple of inches and electronics are adjusted for off-roading. With such a huge wheelbase the added ground clearance in this mode is absolutely essential. Even though the ground clearance is good, this no proper off-roader. There is no low range transfer case, although with the short first gear, auto-locking rear center differential, electronic differential locks and torque vectoring on rear axle, the Q7 is a capable crossover. The question is, how many owner would bother to take it off-road, or how many will be willing to damage the car while off-roading. The other off-road mode is called "All Road" and meant for surfaces like rough gravel or snow. The ride height in this mode is slightly lower than Offroad mode but higher than Comfort mode.

This is what the ownerís manual says, "This Audi model, however, is not designed as a purely off-road vehicle. It is not suitable for extremely difficult conditions, such as expeditions in very remote and rough terrain." Coming to wading depth, the owner's manual says the car should be not be driven in water higher than car's underbody.

Ride height in various drive modes:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-lift.jpg

Screen display in Offroad mode:
Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI-191171dsc00346.jpg

The Auto Park Assist system helps you find suitable parking spaces and to maneuver the vehicle in them. This works in both - parallel and perpendicular parking.

The auto parking system is easy to use. Just turn on the auto parking switch, and drive parallel to the drive way. The car's sensors scan the parking options and once the car indicates the available parking space, just follow the instructions on the screen. This system only takes care of the steering. The driver has to operate the accelerator, brakes and indicated gear modes.

The system worked flawlessly for perpendicular parking. However, during parallel parking, there were some miscalculations in cases where the footpath was not high enough to be scanned by the sensors.

Last edited by Aditya : 4th July 2016 at 16:38.
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Old 4th July 2016, 16:41   #6
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Thread moved from the Assembly Line to the Test-Drives Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 4th July 2016, 17:28   #7
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

Thanks for sharing the review of Q7, Anshuman!

For all those improvements over last gen Q7, it is the looks of the new one which absolutely get my goat!

Old Q7 was known for its size and road presence. New one looks way too subtle. The interiors are very nice though. Nice pics BTW. Thank you again for sharing!
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Old 4th July 2016, 17:38   #8
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

Great review Aditya,

I test drove one in May before picking X5 , unfortunately, it carries similar engine as in past and it's too lethargic for such a large vehicle, perhaps they should have a 2+2 seater option for the Indian market in which case this can be a perfect highway cruiser for a passenger in the middle seat.
There's going to be an SQ7 version soon, with a hybrid turbocharger
That looks tempting if they can price it around 1 cr. it will be a terrific value.
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Old 4th July 2016, 17:53   #9
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

I'm in a minority here, but I like this look better than the old one. Sharp lines without the modified pickup look that most SUVs have.

The only downer I can see is the wading depth, "water below the underbody" is not very confidence inspiring, especially during the monsoon. I have been through deeper water on city roads. The main reason why people choose to buy an SUV is the added ground clearance and implied wading depth.

I am not sure this deserves the 45TDI badge, it looks like an image enhancing exercise by Audi, the 313bhp tune BiTurbo V6 would be the ideal engine for the badge. This engine however is more efficient than the 2 litre Volvo ones, bigger engine, less stress and hence better mileage, unfortunately the NCR ban doesn't take actual pollution into account.

Last edited by avira_tk : 4th July 2016 at 18:08.
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Old 4th July 2016, 18:25   #10
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

External looks are personal and subjective - I don't like either this one or the older one. But one thing that caught my eye were the window switches, start stop button and the electronic seat adjustment buttons - they seem a straight lift from VW or Skoda.

While there is nothing wrong with sharing a common parts bin, using the same for a car that's 4x the cost, takes the sheen out of the Q7. Happy to be proven wrong on this.
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Old 4th July 2016, 18:33   #11
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

Nice review. 'Me behind me' and pics with bottle made it easy to relate. Though not as much as the previous one, this new gen model will also be having good road presence. You will automatically give way if you see this car in your rear view mirror. How on earth is this engine delivering 14kmpl (though not of much importance in its class).
Maybe they could have had the spare wheel at the rear for a change and could have improved the rear bench.
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Old 4th July 2016, 22:53   #12
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

Excellent review, Anshuman (am getting used to using this name to address someone else, now). You have noted the salient points very well, the only reason why anyone still needs to test drive is to get a feel for the engine - you have covered all the checkpoints in your review.

So its an interesting evolution:
- Looks changed, from more butch to more suave/understated
- Driving dynamics are quite sorted
- Rear seat and the shady spare wheel reduces the utilitarian value of the car.

Given these changes, am curious to see who would like to won this car now: someone who has a family of 4, with lots of money, and doesn't want to show off but just enjoy his drive himself, and doesn't want to really offroad but still wants an SUV - is that a correct guess, and if so, I cant help wondering - how many such people out there?
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Old 4th July 2016, 23:53   #13
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

I had driven the SQ7 version in the U.S. last month. It sure does feel extremely eager and enthusiastic. In fact, it's the nicest sounding diesel I've ever driven. And the most impressive part out of all, there's absolutely no turbo-lag to talk of. Torque kicks in from the word 'go'. The 0-100 time of 4.8s is truly exhilarating and rightly believable. In fact, performance is almost in the league of biggies like RR Sport SVR. I really hope they launch the SQ7 in India at around 1.1Cr, should be a hit.

Coming to the exteriors, everyone shall agree that the Q7 has lost its massive road presence with this transformation. In fact, it looks so much more like an estate vehicle. Nevertheless, it's definitely a great job by Audi, especially in the interiors and performance department. Kudos!

Last edited by mohaks19 : 4th July 2016 at 23:55.
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Old 5th July 2016, 11:53   #14
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

Great review there - short and precise!

The Q7 does look a bit estate like in pictures but actually got good road presence. But the trouble is, it almost looks born-outdated. Audi should have tried to tweak the exteriors a bit more, probably with the new grille design which they got in for the Q2 – just something to break the monotony. The brand new generation Audis somehow look more like a tucked in face-lifted model, be it the A4 or the Q7.

And whoever came up with the spare-tyre idea surely want to get an upper hand over Mercedes on the wackiest space-killer solution.

Last edited by GTO : 6th July 2016 at 10:44. Reason: Typo
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Old 5th July 2016, 13:29   #15
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Default Re: Driven: 2016 Audi Q7 45 TDI

Great Review .anshuman. 100 kmph at 1300 rpms would be perfectly cruising. And 600 NM just from 1500 revs sounds good too. Any idea how much does the new Q7 weigh ?



Last edited by GTO : 6th July 2016 at 10:44. Reason: Typo
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