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2021 Audi Q7 Review

The 2021 Audi Q7 ranks in the top third of the luxury midsize SUV class. It fuses high-class cabin materials and abundant tech features with a coddling ride, engaging handling, and energetic engines.

Pros & Cons

  • Powerful engines
  • Well-balanced ride and handling
  • Lots of high-tech features
  • Opulent cabin
  • Subpar cargo space
  • Tight third row
  • Below-average predicted reliability rating

8.1

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 9.1
Performance: 8.4
Interior: 7.3
Safety:
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 9.7 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
TBD
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

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Is the Audi Q7 a Good SUV?

Yes, the Audi Q7 is a great luxury midsize SUV and one of the top performers in the class. It strikes a deft balance between agility and comfort, and it boasts an impressive lineup of brawny engines, especially in the performance-oriented Audi SQ7. The Q7 also has a feature-rich interior with lavish cabin materials. However, its predicted reliability rating is below average, and it trails rivals in both cargo space and fuel economy.

Why You Can Trust Us: 23 Reviews Analyzed

Our goal is to make shopping for your next car as easy as possible. You'll find everything you need to know about this luxury SUV in our comprehensive review. It combines concrete data like horsepower ratings, fuel economy estimates, and cargo space dimensions with 23 professional Audi Q7 reviews.

This review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2017.

At U.S. News & World Report, we rank the Best Jobs, Best Hospitals, and Best Colleges to guide readers through some of life’s most complicated decisions. We've been ranking and reviewing the Best Cars since 2007, backed by a team with more than 75 years of combined automotive experience. To keep favoritism out of the picture, we maintain a separate advertising team and decline expensive gifts and trips from car companies.

Should I Buy the Audi Q7?

The 2021 Q7 is a great choice, but so are many of its luxury SUV classmates, such as the sleek BMW X5, which is fun to drive and boasts decent fuel economy estimates. If you like the Q7 but don’t need a seven-seater, you might want to consider the Audi Q8 or Audi Q5.

Find a 2021 Audi Q7 for sale near you »

2020 vs. 2021 Audi Q7: What’s the Difference?

For 2021, Audi added driver assistance features such as blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert to the standard features list and shuffled a few options and packages. Otherwise, the 2021 Q7 is nearly identical to the 2020 model.

Compare the 2020 and 2021 Q7 »

Here are the key changes for the Audi Q7 since it was redesigned for 2017:

  • 2018: gained standard proximity keyless entry
  • 2019: some features shuffled
  • 2020: midcycle refresh with updated styling and a revamped infotainment system with a dual-screen setup; turbocharged V6 engine with 48-volt mild-hybrid system replaced supercharged V6; Audi Virtual Cockpit became standard; all-new Audi SQ7 debuted
  • 2021: added standard blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2018 Q7, 2019 Q7, and 2020 Q7 reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Best New Car Deals and Best New Car Lease Deals pages to learn about savings and discounts you can find on new vehicles.

How Much Does the Audi Q7 Cost?

The base Audi Q7 Premium has a starting MSRP of $54,950. Even considering it comes standard with Quattro all-wheel drive, that’s an above-average price for the class. It gets even more expensive in higher trims, with the performance-oriented SQ7 topping $91,000.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Audi dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Audi deals page.

Audi Q7 Versus the Competition

Audi Q7 or Audi Q8?

The Audi Q8 is a good luxury midsize SUV. It shares some of the Q7’s features, including Quattro all-wheel drive and the dual-screen MMI infotainment system. The Q8 doesn’t have a third row of seats, instead opting for a lower roofline and coupelike styling. Both luxury SUVs offer high-performance models, but the RS Q8's Quattro sport differential, active roll stabilization, and blistering 591-horsepower 4.0-liter V8 engine far outstrips the SQ7. Unless you want the RS Q8, you’re better off saving money and going with the Q7.

Compare the Q7 and Q8 »

Audi Q7 or Mercedes-Benz GLE?

The Mercedes-Benz GLE is another great luxury SUV. It has more cargo space than the Audi, both behind the rear seats and in total. The Mercedes also impresses with its luxe interior and robust engine options, with the Mercedes-AMG model boasting more horsepower than the Audi SQ7. The GLE can be had with five or seven seats. However, the Q7 has more standard features and more-intuitive infotainment controls. These are both great choices, so choose the one that best suits your needs and budget.

Compare the Q7 and GLE »

Compare the Q7, Q8, and GLE »

Q7 Interior: High-End, High-Tech

Q7 Cargo Space

This Audi has 14.2 cubic feet of space behind the third row, 35.7 cubic feet behind the second row, and a total of 69.6 cubic feet with both the second and third rows folded. Those totals are below average for the class when compared to both two- and three-row SUVs.

How Many People Does the Q7 Seat?

The Q7 is a three-row crossover SUV that can seat seven people. Occupants up front are treated to leather upholstery and heated, eight-way power-adjustable seats. A power-folding third row comes standard too. There are numerous upgrades available, including ventilated and massaging front seats, 12- or 18-way power-adjustable front seats, heated second-row seats, upgraded leather upholstery, an Alcantara headliner, and a heated steering wheel.

The front row is the best place to sit. Most adults can fit in the second row just fine, but the lack of bolstering means they might slide around when the Q7 makes a turn. Adults can fit in the third row for short trips, but if you plan to regularly ferry around anyone other than kids back there, you’d be better served with a more spacious rival like the Volvo XC90.

Q7 and Child Car Seats

The Q7 has five complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors, three for the second row and two for the third.

Q7 Interior Quality

Lavish materials adorn this Audi’s cabin. Leather upholstery is available for the dashboard and armrests, and state-of-the-art tech features endow the Q7 with a futuristic feel.

Q7 Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The MMI infotainment system has two responsive touch screens. Both use haptic feedback (touch- or vibration-based) and audio signals to let you know that your selections were logged, but you have to crawl through submenus to find some settings.

The Audi Virtual Cockpit earns praise from critics. It’s a digital driver display that replaces the traditional gauge cluster. By showing pertinent information like navigation, vehicle information, climate and audio settings, and more, the Virtual Cockpit helps mitigate the need to look away from the road while driving. The whole setup looks sleek and uncluttered.

  • Standard infotainment features: a 10.1-inch upper touch screen, an 8.6-inch lower touch screen, Audi's Virtual Cockpit, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a navigation system, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a 10-speaker stereo, satellite radio, HD Radio, USB ports, and Bluetooth
  • Available infotainment features: a 19-speaker surround-sound stereo, a 23-speaker Bang & Olufsen stereo, and wireless device charging
  • Additional standard features: proximity keyless entry, tri-zone automatic climate control, and a panoramic sunroof
  • Other available features: quad-zone automatic climate control

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto?

Read more about interior »

Q7 Performance: Deft Driver

Q7 Engine

There are three energetic engines available for the Q7, and each comes standard with a slick-shifting eight-speed automatic transmission.

Up first is a 248-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder. In the Premium and Premium Plus trims, you can upgrade to a 335-horsepower turbocharged V6 with a 48-volt mild-hybrid setup; this V6 is standard in the top-trim Prestige. The range-topping SQ7 boasts a 500-horsepower twin-turbo V8.

The base turbo-four engine should satisfy most shoppers, but if you want to get your heart racing, you might prefer an upgrade. The V6 supplies plenty of power, allowing you to execute high-speed passing manuevers with confidence, and the muscular V8 helps the SQ7 race from zero to 60 mph in just 4.3 seconds, according to Audi.

Q7 Gas Mileage

At the time of writing, the EPA has not evaluated the 2021 Q7, but the mechanically identical 2020 model received EPA estimates of 19 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway with its four-cylinder engine. That trails even some competitors with six-cylinder engines, such as the all-wheel-drive BMW X5.

2020 Q7 models with the V6 engine return 17 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway. Those figures are especially disappointing considering its mild-hybrid setup. The SQ7 clocks in at 15/21 mpg.

Q7 Ride and Handling

Despite its size, the Q7 stands out for being both comfortable and fun to drive. An available air suspension bolsters comfort even further. All-wheel steering, available in the Prestige trim, helps enhance manueverability at low speeds and precision at higher speeds. Quattro all-wheel drive comes standard.

Read more about performance »

Q7 Reliability

Is the Audi Q7 Reliable?

The 2021 Audi Q7 has a below-average predicted reliability rating of 2.5 out of five.

Audi Q7 Warranty

Audi covers the Q7 with a four-year/50,000-mile limited warranty.

Read more about reliability »

Q7 Safety

Q7 Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Adminstration gave the 2021 Q7 five out of five stars in the side crash test and four stars in the rollover test. This vehicle did not receive an overall safety rating. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has not tested the 20201 Q7 as of this writing.

Q7 Safety Features           

Standard advanced safety features:

  • Audi Pre Sense Basic (rolls up windows and tightens seat belts if sensors detect an imminent collision)
  • Audi Pre Sense Front (forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and pedestrian detection)
  • Audi Pre Sense Rear (blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert)
  • Audi Side Assist
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • Lane departure warning
  • Rearview camera
  • Automatic high-beam headlights
  • Rain-sensing windshield wipers

Available advanced safety features:

  • Lane keep assist
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Traffic sign recognition
  • Intersection assist
  • Night-vision camera
  • Surround-view parking camera system

Read more about safety »

Q7 Dimensions and Weight

The Q7 is 16.7 feet long, and its curb weight ranges from 4,784 to 5,082 pounds. The Audi SQ7 has a curb weight of 5,291 pounds.

Where Is the 2021 Audi Q7 Built?

Audi builds the 2021 Q7 and SQ7 in Slovakia.

Which Audi Q7 Model Is Right for Me?

Audi builds the 2021 Q7 in three trim levels: Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige. The performance-oriented Audi SQ7 comes in Premium Plus and Prestige trims. All models have Quattro all-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Features are generally the same between the Q7 and SQ7, so the main difference comes down to powertrain. The Q7 gets a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine or a 3.0-liter V6, while the SQ7 has a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8.

Regardless of whether you pick the Q7 or SQ7, the Premium Plus is a good bet. It’s available with most of the Prestige’s equipment, except for performance upgrades like an air suspension, and it doesn’t cost much more than the base Premium.

Audi Q7 Premium

The Premium has a starting MSRP of $54,950. Models with the V6 engine start at $60,800. Standard equipment includes the 12.3-inch Audi Virtual Cockpit, the MMI infotainment system with dual touch screens (10.1 and 8.6 inches), a navigation system, HD Radio, satellite radio, a 10-speaker stereo, USB ports, Bluetooth, a Wi-Fi hot spot (Audi connect), and smartphone integration via Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

Additionally, the Premium trim comes with an auto-dimming rearview mirror, tri-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, heated and eight-way power-adjustable front seats, power-folding third-row seats, a hands-free power liftgate, proximity keyless entry, a panoramic sunroof, and alloy wheels. Standard safety features include a rearview camera, Audi Pre Sense Basic, Audi Pre Sense Front, Audi Pre Sense Rear, Audi Side Assist, front and rear parking sensors, and lane departure warning.

At the time of writing, Audi has not released any official package pricing, but wireless device charging, vehicle exit warning, a surround-view parking camera system, heated second-row seats, and a heated steering wheel are expected to be optional.

Audi Q7 Premium Plus

Premium Plus models have a starting price of $57,200. Additions include a 19-speaker surround-sound stereo, the Audi phone box (automatically connects your phone to the car using Bluetooth and provides wireless smartphone integration and charging), and a surround-view parking camera system. To get the V6 engine, you’ll have to spend at least $6,600 more. The Audi SQ7 starts at $85,000 and also includes a heated steering wheel.

The Executive package adds ventilated and 12-way power-adjustable front seats, heated second-row seats, a heated steering wheel, power rear-window sunshades, quad-zone automatic climate control, traffic sign recognition, lane keep assist, intersection assist, and adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist.

Audi Q7 Prestige

The top-of-the-line Prestige has a base MSRP of $72,000. It can only be had with the V6 engine. It gains an adaptive air suspension, a head-up display, power soft-closing doors, Matrix-design headlights, and most of the options listed above. The high-end Audi SQ7 retails for $91,200.

The Prestige is the only trim available with Valcona leather upholstery, massaging and 18-way power-adjustable front seats, a night-vision camera, a 23-speaker Bang & Olufsen stereo, and all-wheel steering.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Audi dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Audi deals page.

See 2021 Audi Q7 specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2021 Audi Q7 is a well-rounded luxury midsize SUV with a pillowy-soft ride, playful handling, and powerful engine options, particularly in the Audi SQ7. The seats are comfortable, and the cabin is full of premium materials. Perhaps the biggest knock against the Q7 is its subpar predicted reliability rating. Cargo space and fuel economy figures are also substandard.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "With its appealing mix of luxury, versatility and driving prowess, the highly refined Audi Q7 makes a compelling case to snag a good chunk of the premium family SUV segment." -- Autotrader
  • "Sporty, stylish, and swanky, the 2021 Audi Q7 is a great family hauler for well-to-do buyers." -- Car and Driver
  • "Despite committing itself to somewhat cumbersome technologies (we’re looking at you, dual screens) and the V6's backward fuel economy slide, the Q7 is better than it’s ever been. Measured on behind-the-wheel experience alone it ranks with smaller and lighter crossovers, and we can’t argue with its build quality or opulent presentation." -- Autoblog (2020)

Buying

Expert Advice

Last Updated: October 16, 2020

Falling Sales: Dealerships have sold 31.6 percent fewer Q7 SUVs so far this year compared to the same period in 2019. While it places in the middle of the luxury midsize SUV sales race, some of its main competitors including the Mercedes-Benz GLE and BMW X5 are currently outselling it by about 2 to 1. The class-leading Lexus RX is outselling the Q7 by a whopping 4 to 1.

Research more buying advice »
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