New Model News

Audi updates Q7's engine, tech, design for 2020 model year

The Audi Q7's refresh comes at the right time, helping the model not fall behind the competition.

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The Audi Q7 was the German automaker's second best-selling model in 2018 and it's on track for a repeat performance for 2019. Audi is woking to keep the model on top of its game by giving it a significant mid-cycle refresh for the 2020 model year.

At its front, the Audi now has a large octagonal grille with six vertical chrome slats. There's a fresh aluminum front spoiler design, high-definition Matrix-design and Audi laser headlights. LED headlights and taillights are standard. There are also chrome window surrounds and roof rails.

2020 Audi Q7 The car's front-end styling has been updated for the new model year.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The SUV now rides on standard 19-inch five-arm star-design wheels covered in all-season tires. The three-row SUV is available with 20-inch wheels with run-flat tires or 21-inch wheels with all-seasons. Large 22-inch wheels are a further upgrade and come wrapped in summer performance tires.

The Q7 will now be powered by a twin-scroll turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that produces 335 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. That's slightly more horsepower but a serious increase of 44 pound-feet of torque, which is now available at lower RPM ranges, helping the Q7 get off the line quicker. Audi says the model now gets from zero to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds.

The engine is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is standard but all-wheel steering is not (that's available, though). Other available equipment includes an adaptive air suspension and a tow package that gives the model a 7,700-pound towing capacity.

The interior design of the 2020 Q7 follows in the footsteps of the 2019 Audi Q8 with similar cockpit architecture and infotainment touch screen. Each Q7 comes standard with a three-spoke multifunction steering wheel with shift paddles, three-zone automatic climate control, panoramic sunroof with electric sunshade adds light to the cabin, heated eight-way power front seats with four-way power lumbar adjustment, split tumble-folding 35/30/35 second row seatbacks with fore/aft position and seatback angle adjustments, five LATCH connections, and power 50/50 split-folding third-row seats with electric fold and return functions. Quad-zone climate control and sunshades for the rear door side windows and tailgate are available.

2020 Audi Q7 The SUV comes standard with front and rear LED lighting.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

Available packages upgrade the luxury level of the model to include things like real wood inlays, a leather headliner, black roof rails, and interior LED lighting.

The model also comes with a long list of standard and available technologies including a 10.1-inch upper infotainment display and 8.6-inch lower infotainment display, 12.3-inch high-definition digital cockpit, wireless device charging, head-up display, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, a 3D surround sound system with 19 speakers and a 15-channel amplifier, a 23-speaker surround sound system with a 23-channel amplifier.

2020 Audi Q7 The interior of the Q7 is not similar to the Q8.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The 2020 Audi Q7 offers a new suite of standard and available driver assistance safety technology. New for 2020, the emergency assist can detect if the driver is inactive and can initiate a multi-stage process to alert the driver, eventually decelerating the vehicle to a stop in the same lane with activation of the hazard lights. A top view camera system, intersection assist, turn assist, and traffic sign recognition are available.

The 2020 Audi Q7 will start at $60,800. The top-tier Prestige trim starts at $71,200.

Audi has added a new entry level Q7 choice for the 2020 model year.

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

When your consumer research tells you that you need a cheaper version of your three-row SUV in order to get more customers, you make a new base model. Meet the fresh 2020 Audi Q7 45. This move is on the heels of a model refresh for 2020 and the introduction of the SQ7 model.

Like its more powerful stablemates, the Q7 45 features a large, octagonal Singleframe grille. It also has standard LED headlights and taillights, as well as standard 19-inch five-arm design wheels wrapped in all-season tires. Audi will sell the model with available 20-inchers that wear similar shoes.

The new luxury SUV is less powerful than other Q7 models. It's powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. The powertrain achieves 248 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque and can accelerate from 0-60 mph in 6.9 seconds.

The model comes standard with all-wheel drive.

A tow package is available. Checking that option box makes the Q7 45 capable of twig up to 4,400 pounds.

Despite being a new entry level model, Audi has not downgraded the SUV's infotainment system, which features an intuitive dual-screen (10.6-inch upper ad 8.6-inch lower) infotainment and climate control system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility is standard, as is Audi virtual cockpit.

Tri-zone automatic climate control is standard while quad-zone and a panoramic sunroof are available.

The model comes with a long list of standard and available safety technologies including adaptive cruise assist with traffic jam and turn assist and, Audi side assist with rear cross-traffic assist and vehicle exit warning, and top view camera system with virtual 360 surround view.

The 2020 Audi Q7 will now start at $54,800 for the Premium grade and $57,200 for the Premium Plus trim level. There is an additional $995 destination and delivery charge.

Actress Maisie Williams is perhaps best known for starring in "Game of Thrones".

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

While most of us associate "Let It Go" with an ear worm from the movie "Frozen," Audi is hoping that its new Super Bowl spot by the same name will prove just as memorable. The German automaker has tapped actor Maisie Williams to star in the commercial alongside its Audi E-Tron Sportback.

Williams, whose credits include "Game of Thrones", "Robot Chicken", and "Dr. Who," takes the wheel in the ad that kicks off the vehicle's global brand campaign. The musically-inspired 60-second commercial features Williams singing her own version of the song made famous by Idina Manzel.

2020 Audi E-Tron Sportback The commercial features Williams driving an Audi and signing.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The script for the ad plays out with Williams behind the wheel of the new electric SUV stuck in traffic. Audi says that the intersection she stops at "represents a crossroads of today's preconceptions and old notions of consumption, success, and status."

This is the audience's first clue that they're about to be lectured on the social and environmental responsibility of owning the SUV.

The ad continues with Williams choosing to reverse course and leave "it all" behind, as she breaks out in sold and drives "towards a more sustainable future." A musical isn't complete without a full cast singing effort so along the way fellow drivers, pedestrians, and others join in, "representing the brand's efforts to usher in a new era of sustainable mobility. The journey is a metaphor for how the decision to make more sustainable choices takes all of us doing our part."

Williams recorded the vocals for the commercial at the acclaimed Abbey Road Studios in London where the Beatles, Queen, and others have recorded.

Audi has been vocal about its sustainability efforts, leveraging the messaging to help sell its E-Tron line of vehicles, which have faltered out of the gate. The low sales numbers are unsurprising considering a recent Ford survey indicated that a good portion of the world has no interest in owning an electric vehicle. Daimler has recently forced to dispute claims that it was cutting back production of its Mercedes-Benz EQC electric SUV due to a forecasted lack of demand.