The 2017 Audi SQ7 has arrived Down Under, with Audi Australia claiming that its performance-focused flagship large SUV holds the mantle of “the most powerful diesel SUV in the country” and “fastest seven-seat diesel SUV in the world.”
Available as a single configuration, the SQ7 4.0 TDI quattro, to give it its full name, has just gone on sale for $153,616 before on-road cost. That’s $56,761 more expensive than the entry Q7 3.0 TDI 160kW and $48,761 pricier than the Q7 3.0 TDI 200kW.
The SQ7 introduces a number of key highlights offered over and above the regular Q7 family hauling range. The headlining act is the 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged diesel V8 producing 320kW and 900Nm of torque, an engine that debut’s the clever electric-powered compressor (EPC) application said to virtually eliminate turbo lag and heighten response.
Also new is the electromechanical active roll stabilisation system which, like the EPC, requires a 48-volt electric subsystem powered by a lithium ion battery pack.
Check out our in-depth technical look at the SQ7 here.
Outside, the SQ7 features standard equipment such as LED headlights, 20-inch wheels with 235mm tyres, restyled front and rear fascias, revised door trim strips and a switchable exhaust system fitted with a sound actuator. The SUV sits on adaptive, height-adjustable, sports-tuned ‘S’ air suspension.
Inside, the cabin gets fully electric heated front sports seats and Valcona leather trim throughout in all three rows of the seven-seater version. Customers can order their SQ7 in a five-seat configuration as a special order.
The interior also benefits from brushed aluminium inlays, a flat-bottom multifunction paddle-shifter steering wheel, Virtual Cockpit digital driver’s instrumentation, head-up display, MMI Navigation plus with MMI touch console controller, Audi connect internet facility, smartphone interface, Bose 3D surround sound audio, an ambient lighting package and four-zone climate control functionality.
MORE: Audi SQ7 DRIVEN
The SQ7 also boast a huge array of no less than 22 driver assistance systems. These include: front and rear parking sensors, a 360-degree camera system, Park Assist, high-beam assist, Pre Sense front, rear and ‘City’ (autonomous braking) collision anticipation technologies, Turn Assist, active bonnet, Collision avoidance assist, and adaptive cruise control with distance indicator.
There’s also Predictive efficiency assist, Hill descent control, hill hold functionality, a speed limiter, Exit warning indicators, rear cross-traffic alert, side assist with blind-spot monitoring, Active Lane Assist and semi-autonomous-driving Traffic Jam Assist.
Equipped with a ZF-sourced eight-speed conventional automatic transmission, acceleration is claimed to be 4.9sec for the 0-100km/h sprint for the seven-seat version, while the five-seater is one-tenth quicker. Top speed for the 2270kg SUV is an electronically governed 250km/h.
Audi offers wheel upgrades via a choice of five different 21-inch and a single 22-inch styles, each widening the individual tyre footprint from 235mm to 285mm. Aside from improving mechanical grip, the larger rolling stock adversely affects combined fuel consumption, raising the standard version’s 7.2L/100km claim to 7.6L. Wheel updates are priced at between $3300 and $6490 depending on style.
Buyers hoping to harness the SQ7’s maximum handling potential will have to pay an extra $13,500 for the Dynamic package, which adds the aforementioned electromechanical active roll stabilisation, a Quattro sport rear differential and all-wheel steering – this last item, available at a standalone $2650 cost, is said to provide a tighter turning circle than Audi’s small-segment Q3 SUV.
Keen owners wishing to ‘track’ their seven-seater might also choose to add a ceramic brake package asking for a $19,500 premium.
There’s also a huge choice of other cost options ranging from LED Matrix headlights ($2200) to a full-leather interior package ($14,500), and from power assisted door closure ($1550) to a 23-speaker expanded Bang & Olufsen sound system ($11,340).
There is a choice of 13 different paint finishes: two no cost hues, nine metallic and pearl effect finishes at a $2250 premium, a crystal effect Tofana White at $5600 and the Audi Exclusive Garnet Red pearl commanding $7950 extra. Brake calipers can also be painted red for $950.
Check out our full review of the Australian-spec SQ7 from the local launch here.