Audi Q7 e-tron Driven, But Is It Better Than The Volvo XC90 T8?

AUG 10 2016 BY MARK KANE 8

Audi Q7 e-tron 3.0 TDI quattro

Audi Q7 e-tron 3.0 TDI quattro

Audi Q7 e-tron 3.0 TDI quattro

Audi Q7 e-tron 3.0 TDI quattro

The Audi Q7 e-tron appeared in UK…and straight into the hands of Autocar testers.

The latest plug-in hybrid SUV from Audi costs £64,950 (£10,000 more than base conventional version), which translates to about $85,000 US dollars.

Whether it’s worth it to pay that much more for electrified Q7? Well, apparently it depends on particular needs (and probably how much incentive the car nets in your neck of the woods).

Better fuel economy, with up to 56 km (34.8 miles) all-electric range on the 17.3 kWh battery should gradually help to offset the premium price, although we still doubt fuel economy is at the top of most buyers of Audi vehicles.

On the other hand, the 202 kg battery takes up 120 litres of trunk space (leaving 650 litres left) and turns the Q7 e-tron into a five seater instead of seven seater.

Autocar notes that plug-in hybrids (and the Q7 e-tron is no different) offers not only quick but also effortless acceleration with smooth driving experience.  But again, the heavier weight on the Q7 e-tron (over 2,500 kg) affects handling, so one need to decide which features are most important.

“One area that does feel quite different is the handling. Despite our test car having the optional and very worthwhile adaptive air suspension, it couldn’t quite mask the additional mass the e-tron carries over the regular Q7. To be fair to it, there’s very little difference under normal driving conditions; you have to lean on it before the differences become apparent.

When slowing from speed, the e-tron feels like it’s that bit heavier than the standard car (because it is), and it can’t corner as well. Sure, the Q7 isn’t the sharpest-handling SUV out there, but the e-tron has that little bit more body roll and feels more ponderous when changing direction.”

According to Autocar, it’s worth it to also consider the Volvo XC90 T8 if you are looking into a plug-in hybrid SUV purchas:

“…even if you do fit this very narrow brief, we can’t help but think that the Volvo XC90 T8 offers a similar electric-only range, is faster and, crucially (for some at least), seats seven.”

Key data:

  • System power  275 kW (373 hp) and 700 Nm (516.3 lb-ft), AWD
  • Drivetrain: 3.0-liter V6 turbo diesel 190 kW (258 hp) of power and 600 Nm (442.5 lb-ft) of torque plus disk-shaped electric motor 94 kW and 350 Nm (258.1 lb-ft) of torque, integrated into the eight-speed tiptronic
  • 0 to 62 miles (100 km/h) in 6 seconds
  • Top speed 140 mph (225 km/h)
  • Up to 34.8 miles (56 km) all-electric range
  • 17.3 kWh lithium-ion battery
  • Total range more than 1,410 kilometers (876 miles) / 1.7 liters of diesel for every 100 kilometers (or 118 MPGe in the US)

source: Autocar

Categories: Audi, Test Drives

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8 Comments on "Audi Q7 e-tron Driven, But Is It Better Than The Volvo XC90 T8?"

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Autocar is dropping the ball, a little. Versus Volvo/Tesla MX:

+17.3kwh is not “similar” to 9.9kwh Volvo.
+New Q7 is 600lbs lighter than old. So, e-tron probably feels more nimble than the older, higher roll center, Q7.
-The car is still vapor in the U.S.
-If VWG priced the Jetta Hybrid, “nobody wanted”, at $10k more than base, what’s likely for Q7 PHEV?

Why not buy 6 seat Model X, with 75kwh (60 usable) instead of trusting Audi will deliver the 5-seat, no-front trunk, rolley poley, slower, 17kwh (~12 usable) Audi?

All good points except it addresses a different market, people that want to strap stuff to their roof, and go on a long trip without a stop while still being able to do a lot of local commute fully electric. 17kWh battery is not bad, that is more than half of what my eGolf has 🙂 So its a great car for a certain set of needs. For me, Model X is better because I don’t mind the super charger stops as they coincide with my typical breaks anyways, love the more sporty superior driving experience, the huge windshield views, opening and closing doors electrically, using a hitch rack for my bikes is acceptable to me since I am not owning a kayak to put on top. I love never having to fill up gas again, always fully charged in my garage, just hop in and go, set climate cabin temperature from the phone before getting to the car, autopilot and auto park and super comfortable seats make long distance trip a lot more relaxing and less strenuous. I know because I have done those trips both in the Honda Oddysee we traded in for the model X as well… Read more »

Why do You compare it to base trim?

Volvo XC80 T8 is not base trim. Its top trim.

Which is better, a mule or a donkey? Just as relevant 😉

10k premium, petrol savings? Wtf? This car is well and truly targeted at the outlander phev market. How is a 60k car competing with a 30k car, benefit in kind tax – if your company buys you a car or you use your work car for personal use you have to pay bik, it is calculated on a % of the vehicles value and is much, much lower for a phev than a regular suv think 5% vs 20%. Bik tax has been a very powerful way of pushing lower emission vehicles in the uk. I haven’t run the numbers but after 3 years I would expect this to be the cheapest company car in the model range. I think I would still go for the outlander if I need a 4×4 but if I was going to buy a q7 as a company car it would be a complete no brainer. Shame about the 7 seater option not being available.

HOw does it compare against GLE and Xe40?

I think the kicker for buyers cross-shopping the XC90 and Q7 plug-ins will be the third row seating. If you care (and many do shopping in this larger SUV segment) then the XC90 is in and the Q7 is out. If you don’t, then the Q7 seems more compelling for its dramatically better electric range (and presumably you will care about that if you are shopping for a PHEV)…none of which matters if you address ends in U.S.A of course.