Audi Q7 55TFSI Review
The screens also get haptic feedback, large touch points and is lag-free, alleviating some of the pains associated with multiple screens and in Audi’s defence, they simply haven’t replaced the climate control dials with a screen, it is also contextual so it can change the display in relation to inputs on the primary infotainment screen. Smart.
The cockpit quality is pretty much faultless with a high order of fit and finish, although I did wish that the trim chosen along with the gloss piano black was a lighter shade of wood and not the dark walnut as on the test car. From most angles, it doesn’t come across like two different materials at all and looks like a giant slab of glossy plastic. Ambient lighting has been spruced up though and the backlit Quattro badge facing the passenger seat is a neat touch. Like before, Audi’s virtual cockpit still leads the way for clear instrumentation, even in the customizable and digital world. Lack of wireless Apple CarPlay is a bit surprising though and you’ll have to resort to the many USB-C ports around the cabin to mirror your smartphone apps on the MMI screen.
Though the Q7 is largely free of radars, it does get lane departure warning and park assist along with a 360-degree camera view. The quality and stitching of the image from the multiple cameras around the perimeter of the Q7 is noteworthy, as it gives you a seamless birds-eye view of the car on the MMI screen with sharp details, accurate markers for distance and the ability to simply use your finger to rotate the virtual car on the screen for a better all-round view of your surroundings.
Drive: Almost like autopilot
Hot on the heels of the updated Q5, the facelifted Q7 shares a lot of the traits and exemplifies what modern Audis are so good at – effortless driving. And now with a heart transplant, the Q7 makes big gains on refinement, thanks to the creamy V6 petrol engine that makes a wholesome 340hp and 500Nm of torque. These numbers might look a bit anaemic compared to the size and class of the Q7, but Audi has done a stellar job of mating it to an equally fluent 8-speed gearbox that makes brisk progress without ever calling attention to itself.
The seats, especially the second row could do with better under-thigh support, but the compliant ride and generous leg and elbow room, not to mention the huge panoramic roof does make for a nice cabin for long drives with the family in tow. The Q7 also excels at maximising greenhouse with large windows and a low window line that work in tandem to give you great views of the outdoors should you have a full audience. But, the twin rear-entertainment screens for the backseat passengers offer multiple forms of keeping yourself distanced from the front row, including mirroring content from your phone.
Not the most flamboyant SUV, but with refreshed looks and an interior that still wins with its elegant simplicity.