The Audi Q7 was last seen inside the old model and so there was not much to go on. However, it has now been seen out testing in its new suit reading for a reveal at the end of 2014.
It will be a wait which will take a year, but the company do need to work hard in order to compete with the BMW X5, Range Rover Sport and the SUV’s from Volvo and Jaguar. It is thought that in order to do this it will use a selection of ways to reduce the weight so that the large Q7 vehicle will be a typical SUV and therefore available to compete with its closest rivals.
However, the pictures show that the vehicle is still set to be as large as the original model or perhaps even bigger with a roofline that is boxier in order that the third row of passengers are more comfortable. It will be what is underneath that will reduce the weight of the vehicle. This will be done by using all the knowledge gained from the ultra project which was used to make the very light Ultra Quattro concept car.
The PL73 platform is still made of a lot of steel with just 40% of it made from aluminium which uses carbon fibre to bond it together. They may also make the tailgate and front wings from a composite material which will reduce weight. It is expected that it will be 350gkg less than the current model which comes in at 2300kg in the 3.0 TDI model. A similar BMW X5 comes in at just 2145kg and so they will be working hard to make sure they are much closer to that figure.
It is going to have a four cylinder diesel engine on its entry model in the same way that Mercedes and BMW have with theirs. It is expected that it will manage upwards of 200bhp and 300 lb/ft which means that it will match up with what the BMW X5 sDrive 25d and Mercedes ML250 can offer. The more powerful engine will also be used on the Audi Q8 which is a luxury crossover said to be a flagship model planned for 2016. The powerplants will be a V6 which will manage 301 bhp as well as a V6 turbo diesel which will do 272 bhp and a V8 TDI which is capable of 400 bhp. The price is expected to stay around the mark of the current Q7 vehicles of £43,000 to £62,000.
It is also possible that there may be a hot S or RS Q7 version as well. An Audi insider has admitted that it is possible that a sporty version could be considered and has not yet been dismissed. If this does go ahead then it is expected that there will be a S Q7 with a 4.0 litre V8 engine with twin turbo like that used in the RS6, RS7 and Bentley Continental GT which is capable of 552 bhp. The V8 is capable of running under light throttle as an in line four as it has technology that can shut down cylinders which will enable it to save fuel. This means that with this and the weight saving it could manage 20mpg.