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Audi Q7 SUV (2006-2015) - Engines, drive & performance

The Audi Q7 is a big car and its bulk is unavoidable - especially on tight country roads

Carbuyer Rating

3.0 out of 5

Owners Rating
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Engines, drive & performance Rating

3.2 out of 5

With huge tyres and firm suspension, there's impressive grip and very little body lean in faster bends, although the Audi Q7 often feels too wide to drive quickly along narrow country lanes. It's best suited to larger A-roads and motorways, where its excellent refinement really shines.

Like the BMW X5 and Mercedes M-Class, the Q7 is definitely not meant for serious off-roading; its wide performance-biased tyres are unlikely to be much use in mud. If you're thinking of heading into the wilderness, the Land Rover Discovery is in a different league. But extra ground clearance and four-wheel drive mean the Q7 can tackle rough tracks and fields, as well as poor weather conditions, with ease.

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The Q7’s ride quality is on the firm side. Most owners will probably want to leave the adjustable suspension in comfort mode, because in other settings it is stiff for the UK's pockmarked roads.

Audi Q7 diesel engines

With so much weight to lug around, the Audi Q7's engines are all about pulling power. The 3.0-litre diesel has either 204bhp or 242bhp, an eight-speed automatic gearbox and Audi's quattro four-wheel-drive system, ensuring the Q7 has excellent grip on slippery roads.

If you plump for the more powerful 242bhp version, it can accelerate from 0-62mph in eight seconds – nearly a second quicker than the equivalent Land Rover Discovery – making it feel plenty quick on the motorway. Even the 204bhp version gets to the same speed in 9.1 seconds.

The 4.2-litre engine is easily the quickest, doing 0-62mph in an impressive 6.4 seconds.

Audi Q7 petrol engines

Audi has reduced the number of engines available and there are no longer any petrols in the range, unsurprisingly considering that the diesels were more popular, offering high performance and reasonable running costs. A powerful 6.0-litre diesel has also been dropped – it was noisy, not particularly smooth and cost nearly £100,000.

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Which Is Best?

Cheapest

  • Name
    45 TDI Quattro S Line 5dr Tiptronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £67,680

Most Economical

  • Name
    55 TFSI e Quattro S Line 5dr Tiptronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £75,855

Fastest

  • Name
    SQ7 TFSI Quattro Black Ed 5dr Tiptronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £93,400

Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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