$8,586 - $12,131

2009 Audi Q7 Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2009 Audi Q7 was new.


Performance: 7.9

The 2009 Audi Q7 offers adequate performance, but many reviewers said it's hindered by its heavy curb weight and sheer bulk. Fuel economy is also a downside. Still, the TDI turbodiesel-powered model is a more fuel-efficient option.

  • "The Q7 has really become the A8 of the sport utility world, and in this segment Audi is unmatched by BMW, Mercedes-Benz or any other automaker. They're simply the finest." -- Automobile.com
  • "The 2009 Audi Q7, with its sharp looks and Quattro AWD system, is better suited for navigating slippery pavement in inclement weather than for tackling a muddy trail. The Q7's size and weight can make it feel a bit unwieldy around town, but the available back-up camera makes parking easier." -- Edmunds

Acceleration and Power

The 2009 Audi Q7 is available with a 3.6-liter 280-horsepower V6 or a 4.2-liter 350-horsepower V8, both paired with an automatic transmission. New for 2009 is a turbodiesel-powered 3.0-liter TDI V6, which makes 221 horsepower. According to the EPA, the V6 model achieves 14/20 mpg city/highway, while the V8 model achieves 13/18 mpg. The TDI model achieves the best gas mileage, at 17/25 city/highway.

  • "Like many diesels, the Audi's 3.0 feels a lot stronger than its relatively modest 233 horsepower would indicate. That's because it has 369 pound-feet of torque from 1750 to 2750 rpm. Although it's not as quick as the 3.6-liter gasoline V-6 in hammer-down acceleration runs, the diesel feels far stronger around town where engine speeds are typically lower." -- Car and Driver
  • "The 3.6s are pleasantly peppy in around-town driving and cruise with ease, but need a deep stab of the throttle for decent passing power at highway speeds, and several testers find the throttle response to be non-linear. Audi lists the 3.6 at 8.2 seconds 0-60 mph. The 4.2s have a slight delay in throttle response from a rolling stop, but are strong enough otherwise to justify Audi's 7.0-second 0-60-mph claim." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The 3.0-liter clean-burning diesel engine is 50-state legal. It's rated at a modest 221 horsepower, but as is typical of diesel power plants, makes a healthy amount of torque -- 369 pound-feet. The advantages of the TDI Q7 include not only improved overall fuel economy, but increased range, which in turn reduces the number of trips to the pump." -- Edmunds
  • "The Q7's 3.0-liter TDI diesel V-6 is a winner. It's so quiet, so smooth, and so powerful. Well, so torquey, I guess I should say, since it has 406 lb-ft, compared with 266 lb-ft for the 3.6-liter gasoline V-6 offered in the base Q7. Cruising at 80 mph on the freeway is effortless, and if you gun it to 90 mph or higher while you're passing, it's as if the engine is not even exerting itself." -- Automobile Magazine

Handling and Braking

A majority of reviewers noticed that the Audi Q7 has a distinct disadvantage on the road when it comes to handling: its weight.

  • "This thing feels every bit the 5,400 pounds it is." -- AutoWeek
  • "Despite its tight turning circle, the Q7 feels a bit cumbersome around town. City drivers can feel like they're piloting a small ship to the grocery store." -- Edmunds
  • "It takes a long, deep reach into the options bag before the Q7 begins to feel really special. You need, for instance, adaptive air suspension, which features antidive, antiroll, and antisquat technology; maintains a constant vehicle height no matter the load; lowers the body at highway speeds by up to 1.4 inches to reduce drag and fuel consumption; and lets you choose from six different modes: dynamic, automatic, and comfort, as well as lift, kneel, and off-road." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "A driver will still feel the Q7's weight during quick stops." -- MSN
  • "Q7 is more agile and car-like than most large SUVs. Still, its elevated stance and high weight demand slowing for tight corners despite the modest body lean vs. others in this class. The steering is firm and slop-free at highway speeds and usefully light for parking, but Q7 still suffers from a large-SUV-typical turning radius." -- Consumer Guide

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