New looks, new tech for big SUV

Audi's Q7 has come significantly under Ingolstadt’s sharpest scalpel to bring the premium SUV in step with the rest of its SUV range and the surgery is far more than skin deep. Not only does every engine now benefit a degree of electrification, but the cabin gets a make over and the ute now gets a fresh new look too.

On the face of it, a new-look grille and LED headlights set the tone while a new chrome strip that runs between the taillights to add 11mm length, while the SQ7 adds unique design touches including its own grille, chrome exhaust pipes and 20-inch wheels. The five or seven-seat Q7 also gains latest Audi Virtual Cockpit and improved twin touchscreen infotainment and optional head-up display, but there’s far more to it than just cosmetic surgery.

New 170 or 210kW 3-litre V6 turbodiesels or a similarly configured 250kW turbo petrol are mated to an 8-speed automatic and a 48V mild-hybrid system to allow Q7 to coast for up to 40 seconds with the combustion engine off. A still secret petrol plug-in hybrid SQ7 and the 320kW 900Nm bi-turbodiesel mild-hybrid 4-litre out of the SQ8, will follow. 

Q7 will also offer the options electromechanical active roll stabilisation, all-wheel steering and air suspension when it arrives in SA later this year.