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Audi Q7

A bigger but not better Audi.

DIESEL

The Q7 is getting old, and frankly, it wasn’t one of our favorites when it was new. Like other Audis, the Q7 is sharply dressed inside and out, but it feels enormous from behind the wheel, and its nearly 5600-pound curb weight explains why. Despite its size and bulk, the seven-seat version has a cramped third row and very little cargo space behind it. (You can get the Q7 without the third row, but that strikes us as even more pointless, as the five-seat Audi Q5 is far more desirable.) Under the hood is a trio of 3.0-liter V-6s: the base gasoline engine is a 280-hp supercharged V-6; it’s good for a 7.7-second scoot to 60 mph. S line Q7s receive a 333-hp version, knocking the 0-to-60-mph time down to 6.9 seconds with no penalty at the pump. Our choice would be the torquey turbo-diesel, which can hit 60 mph in a brisk 8.0 seconds. The diesel has proven popular in this vehicle. It gets a bit more power this year (240 hp) with the same prodigious 406 lb-ft of torque. More important, its EPA fuel-economy ratings are improved to a commendable 19/28 mpg city/highway. Come next year, the Q5 will get the TDI, giving buyers one more reason to opt for the Q5 over its larger sibling.

COMPETITORS

BMW X5

Infiniti QX

Lexus LX

Mercedes-Benz GL-class

new for 2013

This is a quiet year for the Q7. It is treated to Audi’s latest navigation system, which pairs with Audi Connect to make the Q7 a mobile Wi-Fi hot spot. A revised version of the 3.0-liter TDI turbo-diesel V-6 adds 15 hp and achieves better fuel economy (19/28 mpg, up from 17/25 mpg last year).

SAFETY EQUIPMENT

Front, side, knee, and side curtain air bags; ABS; and traction and stability control are standard. All windows have pinch protection. Rear side air bags; blind-spot monitoring; a corner-view camera; a rearview camera; and adaptive headlights are available.

MPG

CITY 16–19

HWY 22–28

PRO

Decent fuel economy (TDI)

Good power

Towing capacity

CON

Hugely overweight

Cramped third row

Little luggage space behind third row

Base Price Range: $47,695–$65,445

SPECIFICATIONS

DRIVE: 4-wheel

TRIM LEVELS: 3.0T Premium, 3.0T Premium Plus, S line Prestige, TDI Premium, TDI Premium Plus, TDI Prestige

BODY STYLE: SUV/crossover, 5- to 7-passenger

ENGINES: 3.0L turbo-diesel V-6, 240 hp, 406 lb-ft

3.0L supercharged V-6, 280/333 hp, 295/325 lb-ft

TRANSMISSION: 8-speed automatic

PASSENGER VOLUME: 133.2 cu ft

CAPACITIES: Towing 6600 lb; cargo (behind third/middle/front seats) 10.9/42.0/72.5 cu ft

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