Recommended. Superb, but it gets very expensive.
If your standard Audi Q7 just isn’t enough for you, this V8-powered beast should be just the ticket.
This is Audi putting it to the likes of the Range Rover Sport and the Porsche Cayenne – and doing a mighty fine job of it, too.
This, really, is everything you could ever need in a car.
It’s massive, for a start, and comes with every luxury item going – from the latest parking tech to automatically folding third row seats and a towbar that appears when you need it with the push of a button.
That’s if you’re prepared to pay for it all, of course.
The start price is around £70,000, but the specced-up tester we drove topped £95,000. Eye-watering.
However, in this sector money probably isn’t your first concern, it’s more what you get for it.
And you get a serious amount of grunt for starters.
The SQ7 is supremely fast, delivering its power in a smooth yet aggressive way.
In dynamic mode it’s quite the snarling beast and it absolutely flies, frankly.
The 4.0-litre, twin-turbo V8 diesel, which delivers a meaty 435ps, has a lovely rumble to it, yet at high speed this car is amazingly refined and quiet.
It’s also an innovator, with those turbos boosted electrically, helping to develop a big torque figure of 664lb ft.
Top speed is a limited 155mph, so the real indicator is the fact that it gets to 62mph in just 4.9 seconds – remember that this is a big 4x4 that seats seven and weighs 2,330kg.
You can pretty much forget the on-paper mpg of 39 to the gallon – you’ll be lucky to see mid-20s. But you won’t care because you’ll be having so much fun. CO2 is a reasonable 199g/km, though.
The handling is fabulously sharp and all in all it’s incredibly engaging to drive, with fantastic grip and zero body roll.
There is, as you might well expect, lots of cool tech, including a stunning multimedia system, a seriously advanced all-round camera parking system and lots, lots more.
One of the highlights is the high beam headlights, which illuminate the road like you’ve never seen before – when the high beam is switched on it’s like curtains opening on a performance at the theatre.
That said, the auto function didn’t seem to dip the beam as well as it should.
The interior, of course, is fabulous, with our model getting white-stitched leather seats. It all feels very cool and very modern.
It’s super comfortable, too, making long trips effortless.
In many ways the SQ7 has gone to the top of the tree in the big and powerful SUV sector, more than matching the likes of the Range Rover Sport and Porsche Cayenne, along with the BMW X5 and Volvo XC90.
But, spec-for-spec, it is more expensive.
If you like your cars big and practical, but also addictively fast and seriously tuned in to drive, as well as being an effortless cruiser, this is it.
1. Fantastic performance.
2. Mega tech.
3. Infinitely practical to boot.
We don't like:
1. The price can rocket.
2. It’s not frugal.
3. Nothing else.
Most fun: The V8 diesel is a seriously fast engine.
Most sensible: Those looking for sensible need not apply here.
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