Where Audi was once part of a small group of upscale manufacturers building crossovers with three rows of seating, the German company now finds itself facing new competition from the Lexus RX L and BMW X7, along with more established models like the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class and Volvo XC90.
Despite lining up against those newcomers, the Q7 is largely carried over from last year and following a complete redesign in 2017. New stuff for all models includes a backup camera (it’s the law now), which comes bundled with navigation due, as Audi tells us, to “technical issues.” Top-end Technik trim adds a standard rear sunshade for 2019.
The rest of the Q7 is unchanged. Base power is from the brand’s ubiquitous 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which makes 248 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque; the upgrade is a supercharged 3.0L V6 good for 333 hp and 325 lb-ft. Both engines use an eight-speed automatic transmission and standard Quattro all-wheel drive.
Notably, Audi doesn’t offer a 400-plus horsepower engine in the Q7 as BMW and Benz do in their big utilities; in fact, Benz clearly believes you can never have too much power, if its 577-hp AMG GLS 63 is an indication. Of course, this is all in the North American context; in Europe, where Audi has not been forced to give up on its diesel technology, buyers can choose an SQ7 complete with a 430-hp diesel V6.
Komfort trim can be ordered with either engine, and comes standard with 19-inch wheels, MMI infotainment, heated power front seats with driver memory and lumbar, heated steering wheel with electric column adjustment, leather seating, electric parking brake, power tailgate, panoramic sunroof, power-folding and heated side mirrors, smartphone interface with Apple CarPlay, self-leveling xenon headlights, front and rear parking sensors and LED taillights.
Likewise, Progressiv comes with four- or six-cylinder power and adds a top-view camera, four-zone climate control, ventilated front seats, passive keyless entry, auto-dimming rearview and side mirrors, front passenger lumbar and a digital configurable gauge cluster.
Technik trim is V6-only and adds to the standard features list with 20-inch wheels, LED headlights, a rear sunshade and a surround-sound stereo.
When we wrote this, Audi had yet to publish fuel consumption estimates for the 2019 Q7, but look for them to be similar, if not identical, to last year’s 12.2/9.5 L/100 km (city/highway) for four-cylinder models and 12.6/9.4 with the V6.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed