2020 Audi Q7 looks for place in crowded luxury midsize SUV segment

The 2020 Audi Q7 brings significant updates including a new engine, refreshed design and advanced technology. Metro News Service photo

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The 2020 Audi Q7 brings significant updates including a new engine, refreshed design and advanced technology. Metro News Service photo

It’s funny how one brand’s cars can drive so differently than that same brand’s SUVs. Taking it one step further, it’s surprising to me when that brand’s cars feel so much more special and luxurious than the SUVs. To me it should almost be the other way around.

The brand I’m referring to here is Audi, and the test vehicle this week is the 2020 Audi Q7. I’ve generally been a big fan of the Audi brand. Their sedans are noteworthy, and among the German luxury brands, are some of my favorites. Yet, the couple of SUVs I’ve driven from Audi are less memorable.

My tester this week was no exception. But to be clear, this doesn’t mean it didn’t have plenty of high-quality features or things to talk about, as it did.

On looks the Q7′s grille was bold and distinctive. The large, open mouth of the grille dominated the front end. The Audi logo was centered with headlights flanking the corners. While the Audi Q7 looked great at night, with adaptive high beams – a feature I love – during the daytime, the styling of the head lamps was lackluster.

On the back side, the taillights had a distinguishing look. I only wish the front lights had this same quality as it really made the back side the better aspect of the vehicle.

The Q7 had two powertrains, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a 3.0-liter V6 with a slight hybrid boost. While this isn’t considered a hybrid, the extra hybrid motor adds horsepower. My tester was the base four-cylinder engine which generated 248 horsepower. That number felt low and honestly, for an Audi, I was a little disappointed. Off the line it was fine, but lacked any sort of exhilaration, which I’m used to with many of the Audi sedans.

The eight-speed automatic transmission was outstanding, and Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive system never disappointed.

The interior of the Q7 was solid and consistent. Although it lacked a wow factor, its luxury still impressed. The seven-passenger SUV had ample legroom in the middle section. The rear seats were a little cramped for adults.

The interior lighting, along with some nicer touchpoints, redeemed the overall quality of the interior.

Audi’s infotainment system was good. Some of the nuances of the infotainment system have a small learning curve, but once you figured it out, you realized it’s better than much of its competition.

Base price of my tester was $54,800 which was competitively priced amongst other midsize luxury SUVs. The base engine also helped keep the price down.

Fuel economy for this midsize SUV is 19 mpg/city and 23 mpg/highway. In a week’s worth of driving I averaged about 21 mpg. I was satisfied with that fuel economy. The V6 engine, even with the hybrid boost, gets slightly worse fuel economy, so this is the best option for those interested in fewer trips to the gas station.

Jimmy Dinsmore is a freelance automotive journalist.


2020 AUDI Q7

  • Price/As tested price................................................ $54,800/$54,800
  • Mileage.......................................... 19 mpg/city; 23 mpg/hwy
  • Engine............................................. 2.0-liter 4-cylinder
  • Horsepower................................. 248 hp/273 lbs./ft.
  • Transmission................................. 8-speed automatic
  • Drive Wheels................ All-wheel drive
  • Final Assembly Point................ Bratislava, Slovakia

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