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2021 Audi Q7 Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 8.4

Minus its disappointing gas mileage, the 2021 Audi Q7 delivers well-rounded performance. It offers sporty handling, a serene ride, and three potent engine options.

  • "In day-to-day driving, the 2021 Audi Q7 feels quiet, refined, supple and capable." -- Autotrader
  • "The Q7 may be Audi's biggest SUV, but it's surprisingly nimble for its size, especially when equipped with the optional adaptive air suspension and four-wheel steering. Combine that with good visibility and willing engines and the Q7 is a pleasure to drive." -- Edmunds (2018)
  • "Overall, it's just a breeze to drive, and I felt relaxed every time I was behind the wheel. Sure, the massaging seats helped that a bit, but the reality is that the Q7 inspires confidence no matter what the driving conditions [are]." -- New York Daily News (2017)

Engine Options, Horsepower, and Acceleration

  • Base engine: turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 248 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque
  • Available powertrains:
  • turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine and a 48-volt mild-hybrid setup with a combined 335 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque
  • twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine with 500 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque (SQ7)
  • Drivetrain: Quattro all-wheel drive
  • Transmission: eight-speed automatic

The base engine is well-suited for daily driving, and the V6 is a worthy upgrade, especially if you want to blow past other cars on the highway. Performance enthusiasts will find little to complain about regarding the monstrous V8 powering the Audi SQ7. All three engines pair well with the smooth and refined eight-speed automatic transmission.

Accelerating from zero to 60 mph takes nearly seven seconds with the turbo-four engine and roughly 5.7 seconds with the V6, according to Audi. The twin-turbocharged V8 powering the SQ7 is a real brute and helps this SUV sprint from zero to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds.

  • "The 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine has sufficient punch for the average commute, able to push the Q7 respectably from standstill to 60 mph in around seven seconds, although not with a full complement of people and luggage. Anyone seeking greater power for high-speed passing and towing will appreciate the turbocharged 3.0-liter V6, which can send the Q7 sprinting to 60 mph in only 5.7 seconds. The 500-horsepower 2021 Audi SQ7, meanwhile, performs that same feat in only 4.3 seconds. That’s scintillatingly quick for a 5,000-pound vehicle." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "While the 4-cylinder model gets the job done, the V6 feels more appropriate in this duty. We prefer the more substantial power and torque of the V6, even with its slight hit in EPA fuel economy." -- Autotrader
  • "Part of its magic is ZF’s obedient and intuitive eight-speed automatic transmission, which consistently found the right gear when left to decide for itself and reliably swapped cogs when triggered by the wheel-mounted paddles." -- Autoblog (2020)

MPG Estimates

At the time of writing, the EPA has not evaluated the 2021 Q7. However, the nearly identical 2020 model gets 19 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway. Those figures are OK for the luxury midsize SUV class but trail some rivals. Models with the V6 get 17 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway, which is terrible considering its mild-hybrid setup. The SQ7 lags behind at 15/21 mpg.

Handling and Braking

The Q7 offers a nice blend of comfort and agility. Its suspension soaks up most blemishes in the road, and there’s an optional air suspension that provides even greater comfort. At the same time, this Audi tackles turns with confidence, and the available all-wheel steering helps with manueverability at lower speeds and precision at higher ones. All-wheel drive is standard.

  • "The adaptive air suspension on the Premium Plus model provides a magical blend of comfort and sport, while the rear-wheel steering available on the Q7 Prestige greatly enhances both low-speed agility and high-speed stability." -- Autotrader
  • "The adjustability of the optional air suspension, paired with the added agility of four-wheel steering, makes the Q7 surprisingly fun to flog down a twisty back road. It also rides quite smoothly." -- Car and Driver
  • "If any company was going to turn something as unlikely as a 3-row premium-midsize-crossover SUV into an engaging drive, chances are it would be German. The Audi Q7 adds enjoyment to its impressive resume. For day-to-day duty, the Q7 is quiet, refined, and supple. Yet it remains composed at higher speeds or when snaking roads come along. Even the steering feel is fantastic. The adaptive suspension makes a great contribution to the dynamics, providing a wider range between comfort and sportiness. And one of the best reasons for choosing the Prestige trim is the availability of rear-wheel steering, which enhances agility and makes maneuvering easier." -- Kelley Blue Book
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2021 Audi Q7

MSRP: $54,950 - $85,000

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