AUDI’S fourth Q7 large SUV offering – the Q7 e-tron quattro is finally slated to arrive in showrooms in January 2018, bringing the first diesel/electric SUV to the Australian market.
Priced from $139,900, it builds on the current mid-range Q7 3.0 TDI quattro which uses a 190kW/600Nm 3.0-litre V6 diesel but adds an electric motor, fed by a plug-in-chargeable 17.3kWh battery which Audi says provides up to 56km of pure electric range and a combined fuel efficiency of just 1.9L/100km.
With diesel and electric motors working in unison, the new Audi Q7 pumps out 275kW and 700Nm – enough to accelerate to 100km/h from zero in 6.2 seconds and on to a top speed of 230km/h. With the added electric power the e-tron beats the 190kW 3.0 TDI to 100km/h by 0.3s and is only trumped by the 4.0-litre V8 diesel Audi SQ7 which does the dash in 4.9s.
Customers who charge the Q7 e-tron at home with a standard 240-volt socket can deliver a full charge in 10 hours but that figure can be reduced to as little as 2.5 hours if connected to a high-rate system.
Unlike the three other combustion-only Q7 variants, the new e-tron addition sacrifices a spare wheel and third row of seating to accommodate the battery under the boot floor limiting occupant space to five seats.
Beyond the plug-in hybrid system, the Q7 e-tron shares the same specification as the 190kW 3.0-litre TDI, and the driver assistance and safety systems of the entire range. These include autonomous emergency braking up to 85km/h, adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assistance, lane departure warning and assistance, cross traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, Audi’s ‘pre sense’ which tensions the seat belts and closes the windows if a collision is likely, as well as warning to following traffic if they are at risk of rear-ending the Q7.
Inside, the e-tron gets an 8.3-inch central MMI information screen, complemented by a second 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster dubbed the Audi Virtual Cockpit.
Other standard features include 19-inch wheels, heated front seats, leather, a 180-watt sound system, LED headlights and dynamic indicators, adaptive air suspension as well as a number of subtle exterior design details unique to the e-tron.
It has taken the e-tron nearly two years to join its combustion brethren in Australia since it launched globally in 2015 and joins two V6 diesel variants from $97,800 as well as the $155,511 V8 SQ7.
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