NEWS

2007 Audi Q7: Test-Drive Tips

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If you’re in the market for a luxury SUV there are plenty of choices available, and Audi just gave you one more to consider with its new Q7 full-size SUV. We just posted a full review on it if you’re interested in getting the full rundown, but we’ve included here some things to consider if you decide to take the Q7 on a test drive. 

  • Suspension and wheels: Q7s are available with 18-, 19-, 20- or 21-inch wheels, and can have a conventional steel suspension or an adaptive air suspension with adjustable damping. I tested a Q7 with the adaptive suspension and 20-inch wheels and thought the ride quality — in any of the suspension’s modes — was very firm. If you drive on potholed roads regularly, you might want to check out a Q7 with smaller wheels and the steel suspension; it might offer some relief. 
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    Multi Media Interface: All Q7s feature some version of Audi’s Multi Media Interface, which controls vehicle settings and systems via a knob and buttons on the center console and a display screen on the dash. Get familiar with the system and try to decide if you would be comfortable with something like adjusting the radio this way day in and day out.

  • Passing response: Take the Q7 on the highway and floor it a few times to see how quickly it responds. When testing a Q7 with the 4.2-liter V-8, the delay between flooring the pedal and accelerating forward was more significant than I had expected.
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    Rearview camera: Test a Q7 with the optional rearview camera system if you can. Shifting into reverse projects an image from the camera on the dashboard display screen, and the image includes overlays to help you size up a parking space and gauge where the rear of the vehicle is headed. These systems can be especially handy when parallel parking.

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    Third-row seat: An optional split-folding third-row seat expands seating capacity to a maximum of seven, but Audi says it’s only designed for passengers up to 5-feet-4-inches tall. (At 6-foot-1, I can attest it wasn’t meant for me.) If you feel able, climb on back there and see if it’s worth $690.

  • Cargo area load height: You don’t have to bring your set of Samsonite luggage to the dealership, but open the liftgate, stand next to the rear bumper and envision loading and unloading bags into the Q7’s cargo area. Is the height comfortable for you? If you’re testing a Q7 with the air suspension, you can lower the rear of the vehicle to make this job easier.
  • Second-row seats’ weight: Besides sitting in them, spend some time folding and raising the second-row seatbacks. Are they light enough for you to easily operate?
  • Panorama Sunroof: The Panorama Sunroof is a stunning option that provides front and rear occupants with expansive overhead views. Even if you don’t feel it’s worth the $1,850 price, it’s definitely worth seeing one when you’re at the dealership.

Related:
Cars.com’s 2007 Audi Q7 Expert Review
2007 Audi Q7 Review Preview

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Mike Hanley has more than 20 years of experience reporting on the auto industry. His primary focus is new vehicles, and he's currently a Senior Road Test Editor overseeing expert car reviews and comparison tests. He previously managed Editorial content in the Cars.com Research section. Email Mike Hanley

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