The new Audi Q7 2.0L TFSI is a princely ride
Getting a temporary immersion in ultra luxury certainly can put one in danger of becoming a malcontent when shoved back to regular programming so to speak, but on the brighter side, it broadens one’s understanding of how much higher the bar can be raised. That is especially true when it comes to cars.
Starting from the top
I first got to drive Audi’s flagship SUV, the exceptional Q7, on the plush highways and manicured desert dunes of Dubai. The setting was definitely by design, to vividly demonstrate how the Audi Q7 performs in its element—and typical lifestyle setting. It was certainly at ease sharing the pavement with exotic supercars amidst glittering establishments. And with its 3.0 TDI/Turbo-diesel engine, asphalt peeling with it was just as appealing, but definitely more luxurious. It didn’t stop there, as it was ultra capable off the road as well. Equipped with Audi’s Drive Select and adaptive air suspension that’s made more effective by their renowned Quattro AWD system, the Q7 made easy work of our desert runs while providing utmost comfort to its occupants in every way. It was after all, the pinnacle of Audi’s cutting edge automotive engineering and technology in SUV form.
Adaptation, not compromise
It’s hard to believe that was a couple of years ago, for the Q7’s features still seem ahead of what’s current. For 2017, the flagship SUV gains a new engine. Not earth-shattering news per se, but the fact that it’s smaller, lighter, and even faster than its predecessor—with a 2.0L displacement at that—is what brings it to the fore once again. Enter the new Audi Q7 2.0L TFSI with an all-new 2.0L gasoline-fed engine that’s rated at 252hp and 273 lb-ft of Torque, sprints from 0-100km/h by half a second faster than the previous 3.0L Q7 variants. Despite that, it’s 22 percent more fuel-efficient, 500 lbs. lighter overall, with even roomier standard seating for up to 7 people.
With the absence of the variable air-suspension system, the new Q7 seems to be more geared toward being a swift yet opulent city cruiser. Surprisingly, it felt considerably more agile, filtering in and out of packed roads and highways in Metro Manila. I initially was a tad concerned about diving deep in congested traffic so to speak, but quickly discovered it was baseless—for I instantly melded with the cockpit and steering wheel in a manner of speaking, and just enjoyed the fluid yet precise handling of the Q7. Its 8-speed Tiptronic Automatic Transmission was silky smooth, as transitions from gear to gear were simply undetectable even as a try to shoot out of a tight spot in a near-surreal rate of acceleration for a vehicle of its size.
To say it drives smooth just doesn’t cut it. In no time, I was driving it like I would any vehicle nearly just half its size, with the pleasure and comfort levels tripled, and stress levels in traffic cut in half.
To encapsulate a Manila to Subic drive with it—it was effortless, quick, and incredibly gratifying. Its improved fuel-efficiency is the cherry on top of the cake.
Without losing out on any aspect, and leaving the most salient features of the previous models as available options, the new Audi Q7 managed to transcend what its predecessor has achieved. It has become more compelling at the very least because of its enhanced practicality; it has become a lot more desirable and engaging due to its significantly augmented performance amidst the top-tier luxury, comfort and safety it’s known for.
It seems like Audi has done it again.