The second generation of Audi’s Q7 midsize crossover arrives in U.S. showrooms early next year offering loads of new technologies and a starting price that’s more than $6,500 higher than the model it replaces.
The redesigned seven-passenger crossover starts at $55,750, compared to the $49,225 entry price of the outgoing first-generation Q7, which dealers are now selling down after a nearly 10-year run in the U.S. market.
The 2017 Q7 wears all-new sheet metal featuring more straight, clean lines, more angular shapes in front and a lower stance. It uses the company’s new multi-material body with pieces of aluminum, high-strength steel and other lightweight materials to drop 475 pounds off the previous model.
Other surface highlights include LED daytime running lights, aluminum roof rails, integrated trapezoidal exhaust outlets and power-adjustable, folding, heated exterior side mirrors.
A 3.0-liter supercharged V6 delivers 333 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque at 2,900 rpm. An eight-speed Tiptronic automatic with paddle shifters sends power to all four wheels.
The Q7 comes with a newly developed five-link suspension with a compact design, which results in a lower, easier-loading cargo area in the rear. An air suspension system is offered for cars with Audi drive select, and all-wheel steering is also available. The variable-ratio electronic power steering system is speed sensitive.
Inside, drivers and passengers get more headroom, legroom and shoulder room, according to Audi, and split-folding second-row seats with seatback angle adjustments. Elsewhere inside, the Q7 gets a three-spoke wheel, an ergonomically designed gear selector and five LATCH child-seat-mounting points, so bring the brood. A panoramic sunroof is standard, as is three-zone climate control.
As with the other new Audis, the Q7 comes with the company’s virtual cockpit with a 12.3-inch display behind the steering wheel that uses Google Map images for one the best displays on the market. A full color head-up display projects the relevant info onto the windshield, while Audi pre sense basic watches the road and prepares the car if an impact is imminent.
The optional Audi pre sense plus does the emergency braking if necessary and pre sense rear -- standard on Premium Plus and Prestige -- monitors traffic behind. Vehicle exit assist watches when you’re opening doors, rear cross traffic alert looks when you’re backing out of a parking space, collision avoidance helps with moose test maneuvers, traffic jam assist can steer the car through congested roads, and finally, turn assist assesses the risk of oncoming traffic when making a left. Who said autonomous cars aren't here yet?
Android Auto and Apple Car Play are included, as is a specific Q7 app for both iPhone and Android.
The Premium trim starts at $55,750. The Premium Plus starts at $59,750 and the Platinum will set you back $65,250.
Prices on the 2017 models include a $950 destination charge.
Ryan Beene contributed to this report.