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NAIAS 2015 Preview: Audi unveils lighter, roomier 2015 Q7

NAIAS 2015 Preview: Audi unveils lighter, roomier 2015 Q7 image

Text: Marcus De Guzman / Photos: Audi Press | posted December 15, 2014 11:43

The second-generation Audi Q7 is 325 kg lighter than its predecessor

Audi has officially revealed the 2015 Q7, the second-generation of the German automaker's full-size SUV. It has been dubbed by the company as lighter and more spacious than the predecessor despite having a more compact exterior.

As it is the lightest model in its class according to Audi, it only weighs 1,995 kg with the 3.0-liter TDI engine, 325 kg lighter than the first-generation. It was made possible as the chassis was constructed from high-strength steel and aluminum along with a multi-material body. Its doors, hood, front fenders and tailgate are all made from aluminum. Dimension-wise it is now 37mm shorter and 15mm narrower while still having the same height. The Singleframe grill is integrated onto the front end and extends all the way to the headlights, which can come in HID lighting, LED or Matrix LED technology. Daytime running lights come as standard as always while the taillights of a range topping model include dynamic turn signals.

The rear and side of the 2015 Audi Q7

Standard models of the Q7 sport matte aluminum trim strips and anthracite-finished bumpers and wheel arches. Bolt-on parts like the door inlays and front and rear underbody protection are painted in silver while the front grill can be finished with a new, lightly structured paint that accentuates the Q7's off-road character.

Inside, greater legroom and headroom has been applied to the 2015 Q7 as there is an additional 27mm of space between the first and second row of seats while headroom has been increased by up to 41mm at the first row while the second row gets a 23mm increase. A wraparound design that runs from the doors to the instrument panel can be seen aboard the cabin which gives the occupants a feeling of protection. The instrument panel is visually separated from the center console, which according to Audi, supports the Q7's sportiness and lightness of the interior.

The interior of the 2015 Audi Q7

Interior amenities featured on the 2015 Audi Q7 include the brand's latest MMI infotainment system that can be controlled via a 7-inch monitor or a 8.3-inch monitor when opting for the MMI navigation plus, a bigger touchpad for the MMI system, an optional Bose or Bang & Olufsen sound system, a rear seat entertainment system with one or two optional 10.1-inch tablets, 32 GB internal storage space and wireless connectivity support courtesy of Bluetooth, NFC and LTE.

The new MMI touchpad of the 2015 Audi Q7

Powering the 2015 Q7 are a range of diesel and gasoline engines, along with a new e-tron diesel plug-in hybrid model that was reported a few days ago. First up is the 3.0-liter TDI V6 engine that cranks out 272 PS with 600 Nm of torque and can go from 0 – 100 km/h in 6.3 seconds. It has a top speed of 234 km/h and averages 17.5 km/l. Next is a lesser variant of the 3.0-liter TDI engine that only outputs 218 PS and 500 Nm. It will be available at a later date.

Over to gasoline-powered engines, there is the 3.0-liter TFSI engine that produces 333 PS and 440 Nm. It can sprint from 0 – 100 km/h in 6.1 seconds and can go all the way to 250 km/h. It has a mechanical compressor which deactivates during part load, giving it a fuel average of 13 km/l. The last of the gas-fed engines is the smaller 2.0-liter TFSI that generates 252 PS and 370 Nm which has been primarily planned for the Asian and U.S markets.

A new powertrain available for the 2015 Audi Q7 is the e-tron diesel plug-in hybrid model which is the brand's first diesel plug-in hybrid. It is powered by a 3.0-liter TDI engine that produces 258 PS along with an electric motor that provides 94 kw. Combined, the hybrid model has a total system output of 373 PS with 700 Nm of torque and is mated to a 8-speed tiptronic gearbox that. On full electric mode, it can go from 0 -100 km/h in 6.1 seconds and has a top speed of 225 km/h. It has an average fuel consumption of 58.8 km/l. It will be available after the debut of the 2015 Q7 and will run on Audi's quattro AWD system.