2017 Audi Q7

2017 Audi Q7 Review

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by Edmunds
Edmunds Editor

Edmunds expert review

For 2017, the Audi Q7 receives its first major redesign since it debuted all the way back for the 2007 model year. That's a long time to wait, but the changes are worth it. From the outside, the new Q7 features a more wagonlike profile highlighted by sharper-looking styling and an imposing angular grille. The interior is also very different, picking up cues and technology from the luxurious yet still understated A8 sedan.

Even though this is Audi's biggest crossover SUV, the Q7 is surprisingly easy to drive. It's pretty easy to see out of and is relatively nimble around turns (especially when it's fitted with the optional adaptive air suspension and four-wheel steering). But the new Q7 is even more impressive when you consider that it can almost drive itself. Using vast amounts of data from sensors and cameras on the vehicle, the Q7 can relieve the driver from long-distance tedium by maintaining speed and distance to cars in front, staying within its lane, automatically slowing before entering a turn and even reading speed limit signs and adjusting accordingly.

Besides the approach toward full autonomy, the 2017 Q7 also improves upon its luxury status with high-quality materials inside and exceptional comfort. With all of the latest infotainment technology available, even hard-core early adopters should be impressed with the Q7's features and how easy it is to use them. Under the hood, the Q7's new turbocharged four-cylinder brings with it some improved fuel economy numbers. The supercharged V6 powertrain is pretty much unchanged, but a reduced curb weight of a few hundred pounds has helped boost fuel economy with the V6 as well.

As it stands, the 2017 Audi Q7's only major drawback is cargo capacity. Rivals such as the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class and Volvo XC90 boast more space. You'll also want to check out the sporty and well-rounded Acura MDX and BMW X5. Overall, though, the Q7 is one of the best three-row luxury crossovers SUVs available today. Whether you opt for a base model or a fully loaded Q7, we're confident you'll be satisfied with its admirable blend of luxury, performance and technology.

We Recommend:

We like the Premium Plus trim for the 2017 Audi Q7. It has some features you'll want for sure (such as keyless entry and push-button ignition) plus some extra tech and safety features. You can also pick and choose from the Q7's best options. If you spend much time in traffic, we'd recommend the Driver Assistance package that equips the Q7 with adaptive cruise control and enhanced safety features. Either Q7 engine is fine, but note that the four-cylinder's advantage is its lower price tag rather than better fuel economy.

Standard safety features for the 2017 Q7 include antilock brakes, stability and traction control, front-seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera and forward collision warning with automatic (low-speed) braking. Also included is Audi's Pre-Sense basic system that senses if the driver is attempting to avoid a collision and automatically tensions the seat belts, primes the braking system, and closes windows and the sunroof. Available Audi Connect services also include emergency assistance, automatic crash notification, remote door locking and curfew, speed and valet alerts.

The Premium Plus and Prestige trims get blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and side exit alerts (notifies exiting occupants if a car or bicyclist is approaching from behind). Lane departure warning and intervention and an improved forward collision mitigation system are optional for these trims. Rear-seat side airbags are optional on all Q7 trims.

In Edmunds brake testing, the Q7 Prestige with the Adaptive Chassis package came to a stop from 60 mph in 112 feet, which is a very good result for an SUV in this class.



What's new for 2017

After a one-year hiatus, the Audi Q7 is back and fully redesigned for 2017. Highlights include revised styling, a roomier interior, new technology features, improved fuel economy and a new four-cylinder turbocharged engine.



Trim levels & features

The 2017 Audi Q7 is a seven-passenger full-size SUV that is available in three trim levels: Premium, Premium Plus and Prestige.

Standard features for the Premium trim include 18-inch alloy wheels (19-inchers with the V6), xenon headlights, automatic wipers, LED running lights and taillights, power-folding heated mirrors, a panoramic sunroof, roof rails, front and rear parking sensors, forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and automatic braking, and a power liftgate.

On the inside, you get selectable drive modes, three-zone automatic climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a 7-inch color driver information display, leather upholstery, eight-way power-adjustable and heated front seats (with driver four-way power lumbar adjustment), driver-seat memory settings, 35/30/35-split second-row folding seats and 50/50-split power-folding third-row seats. Standard tech features include a rearview camera, Audi's MMI infotainment system, a 7-inch central display, Bluetooth connectivity and a 10-speaker sound system with a CD player, HD and satellite radio, and two USB ports.

A navigation system option is available and is paired with voice control, a handwriting recognition controller pad, a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, emergency telematics and smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Premium Plus includes the navigation system and adds keyless entry and ignition (with hands-free tailgate access), auto-dimming side mirrors, blind-spot monitoring, side exit warnings, a power-adjustable steering wheel and interior ambient lighting. Options include the Vision package (LED headlights, a configurable gauge-cluster display and a surround-view camera system) and the Warm Weather package (four-zone automatic climate control, ventilated front seats and manual rear window sunshades).

The Prestige (only available with the V6) includes the above listed Premium Plus options along with 20-inch wheels, a head-up display, additional interior lighting, a high-resolution 8.3-inch central display and a 19-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system.

All Q7 trims are eligible for the Cold Weather package (heated steering wheel and rear seats), a tow hitch and a rear-seat entertainment system. Premium Plus and Prestige trims are eligible for the Driver Assistance package (traffic sign recognition, automatic high beams, lane departure intervention, adaptive cruise control and improved forward collision mitigation).

Options reserved solely for the Prestige trim include the Luxury package (multicontour front seats with massage functions, power door closers, a faux-suede headliner and upgraded leather upholstery), Adaptive Chassis package (all-wheel steering and an adaptive air suspension), a night-vision camera and a 23-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system.

Two engines are available for the 2017 Audi Q7. The first is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that puts out 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. The second is a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 that produces 333 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque. Both engines come with an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.

In Edmunds testing, a 2017 Q7 Prestige with the V6 and the Adaptive Chassis package accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds, which is quick for a three-row luxury SUV. The EPA estimates fuel economy at 21 mpg combined (19 city/25 highway). These figures are about average for the class. We observed 23.3 mpg on our highway-biased evaluation loop. With the four-cylinder engine, EPA estimates are just slightly higher at 22 mpg combined (20 city/25 highway).

Properly equipped, a four-cylinder Q7 can tow up to 4,400 pounds, while a V6-powered Q7 can tow up to 7,700 pounds, which is above average for this class.



Driving

Despite a curb weight of almost 5,000 pounds, the 2017 Audi Q7 is surprisingly maneuverable and nimble. Especially if the optional adaptive air suspension and four-wheel steering are specified, the Q7 drives as if it's actually a size smaller, like Audi's Q5. Even without the Adaptive Chassis option, though, the Q7 is sure-footed around turns and instills driver confidence thanks to strong, consistent brakes.

This athleticism doesn't come at the expense of ride quality, either. Rough pavement is effortlessly smoothed over, and the cabin remains blissfully quiet. When equipped with the V6, accelerating to highway speeds or passing is easy, and the responsive eight-speed transmission is a nice added touch. We haven't had the opportunity to test the four-cylinder Q7 yet, but we will update the review with full details once we get behind the wheel.

Just as significant as what the driver can draw from the Q7 is what the car can do on its own. Combining existing technologies such as lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, forward-looking cameras and navigation information, the Q7 can help drivers considerably during congested freeway commutes or vast, unpopulated highway stretches by doing much of the driving on its own.

Interior

Were it not for the 2017 Audi Q7's elevated ride height, it would be easy to mistake its interior for the flagship A8 sedan. Materials quality is excellent and, as is customary with Audi, the design is elegantly understated. On higher-trimmed models, the MMI screen and virtual gauges are so sharp that an increase in resolution would be undetectable to the human eye. At night, the customizable pinstripe ambient lighting casts a sleek Tron-like glow, enhancing the cabin's high-tech look and feel.

Operating the many systems in the Q7 is easy thanks to several input devices at the driver's disposal. The MMI controller dial is positioned perfectly under the driver's hand as is rests on the wide gear selector handle. A touchpad that also features handwriting recognition is situated just beyond the dial, and redundant controls are also on the steering wheel. The abundance of functions can be daunting at first, but after some time it can be as easy to operate as any other system.

The front seats provide very good long-distance comfort but not much lateral support when cornering. We doubt, however, that, as a three-row luxury SUV, the Q7 will see much time on a racetrack. More important, middle-row passengers enjoy a wealth of head- and legroom, and the seats also slide and recline. These seats easily fold and tumble forward with little effort to allow access to the third row. As in most SUVs in this class, the rearmost seats can accommodate kids and perhaps smaller adults in relative comfort. The third row folds flat with the press of a button in the cargo area or by the second-row seats.

With all seats occupied, the Q7's cargo capacity is limited to 14.8 cubic feet. With the third row stowed, capacity increases to 37.5 cubic feet, and with the second row flat you'll be looking at 71.6 cubic feet of available space. These figures are rather small compared to those for other three-row SUVs in this class, which can hold between 10 and 20 more cubic feet.

Edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.