Audi AG has launched the all-new Audi A7 Sportback, their four-door all-wheel drive Gran Turismo has been described as being three cars-in-one – the look of a coupé, the versatility of a station wagon and the spaciousness of a saloon.
One engine variant is offered at launch: a 3.0-litre TFSI V6 petrol engine paired with seven-speed S-tronic dual-clutch gearbox, and quattro drivetrain. Output is 340bhp and 500Nm of torque with a 0-100km/h time of 5.3 seconds en route to the 250km/h top speed. Other engine variants in both petrol and diesel will be added to the line up in the coming months.
There is also a new mild hybrid system for improved comfort and efficiency with a 48-volt primary electrical system with a belt alternator starter (BAS) working in tandem with a lithium-ion battery that achieves a recuperation performance of up to 12 kW when braking. At speeds between 55 and 160 km/h, the coupé can coast in freewheeling mode with the engine deactivated and then restarted comfortably via the BAS.
The start-stop function now activates at 22 km/h (13.7 mph). There’s a standard front camera that, while at a standstill, as soon as vehicle ahead begins to move, the engine restarts predictively. In real-world driving, the MHEV technology reduces fuel consumption by up to 0.7 litres per 100 kilometres.
Overall the Audi A7 is 5mm shorter than its predecessor but the wheelbase has been extended and the legroom has increased by 21mm. Width and height remain the same. Luggage space is 535 litres which rises to 1390 litres if the rear seats are folded.
The A7 gets styling cues from the A8 with a large grille dominating the face of the car and a more muscular bonnet. New are the headlights with three LED options offered: the standard LED, HD Matrix LED and HD Matrix LED with laser high beam, the latter two standing out with a distinctive light design. The tail lights are now a strip of LED lights that stretch across the rear.
There’s a new interior and enhanced driver conveniences that includes Audi’s new MMI with a touch response interface in place of the rotary dial and buttons, and two large resolution touch displays. The user can hear and feel a click when their finger triggers a function. The new menu layout gives faster access to the content and can be personalised. The driver-focused Audi virtual cockpit is standard with a 10.1-inch screen when MMI navigation plus is fitted.
The Audi A7 Sportback comes with technology from the flagship Audi A8, and has an AI button in the A7 that will activate parking pilot as well as remote garage pilot – the autonomous manoeuvring of the car in and out of a parking space using as many as five radar sensors, five cameras, 12 ultrasonic sensors and a laser, controlled through the smartphone with the driver standing outside the car.
There are 39 driver assistance systems split up into three packages make things easier for the driver. They are split up into three packages: the Audi AI parking package (gradual introduction beginning 2018), the City assist package with the new crossing assist, and the Tour assist package.
A slew of handling technologies such available or offered in the A7 to improve agility and stability according to speed and driving style: all-wheel steering, electronic chassis control, updated air suspension.
The all-new Audi A7 Sportback rolls off the Neckarsulm production line in early next year, making its appearance in the German market at the end of February 2018. The starting price for the 55 TFSI quattro S tronic is around 68,000 euros (rounded up, that is approximately RM339,000 or S$110,500).