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The Audi Q7 3.0 TDI in the super test

Audi Q7 3.0 TDI in the super test
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A udi and all-wheel drive - many only think of them Quattro models. Wrongly, because in the eventful history of the brand there have also been pioneering off-road vehicle developments. Thousands of recruits, for example, swung across the military training areas in the DKW Munga, which was emitting happy two-stroke clouds - at the time a development by Auto Union, the forerunner of today's Audi AG. The VW Iltis, the successor to the Munga and no less legendary off-roader, was also developed by Audi and by no means in Wolfsburg, and in some cases even built in Ingolstadt. This Iltis is said to have impressed the then Audi test manager Jörg Bensinger so much that he urged Ferdinand Piëch to develop the Audi Quattro.

The big Audi Q7 in the super test

Audi has long since had nothing to do with military equipment; the brand has blossomed into a hip alternative in the so-called premium segment. The Audi Q7 fits in with this. Not only a huge amount in terms of size, but also in terms of price in regions where normal earners are left breathless: the Supertest candidate with extras for around 20,500 euros on board cost exactly 71,256.37 euros. Not necessarily a price range that one likes to sink into the bottomless morass or scratch the next rock face. But in Ingolstadt, too, it was very curious to see how the large luxury SUV would fare in the tough super test.

The high-speed tires on the chic forged wheels have been exchanged for robust Goodyear Wrangler-AT /R on standard aluminum (with clearance up to 190 km /h, they can also be driven on the road without problems), and on our test site in Horstwalde the water splashed into the pit. Anyone who drives off-road more often knows: Especially with a veritable ship like the Q7, you have enough to do with nowhere to offend. Accordingly, you have to rely on the fact that, in case of doubt, no maliciously-minded tree stump hiding under the turf will cause havoc in the underground of the expensive device. The corresponding precautionary measures in the construction of the Q7 have been solved properly, but not completely satisfactorily.

The Q7 also did not go through the twisting path without surprises. Concern was caused by loud cracking noises from the area of ​​the headliner, which obviously indicated considerable tension in the body. Interesting: A petrol Q7 on board for comparison cracked in the same places and wasthen also calmly. It is likely that adhesions from the final assembly of the headliner came loose. No negative effects were found in the further test operation of the two Audis. No rattling noises, even in the off-road test the creaking noises were no longer audible.

Three-liter turbodiesel

A notch that had to be wiped out in the handling test: Here, finally, the big bumbler could really show off. The way the three-liter turbodiesel attacks and thrashes the five-meter block through the deep sand is huge. It's amazing how agile the chunk can be tossed back and forth. One would like to start a Dakar special stage right away and let the gas stand still.

In the meantime, the water basin was flooded to a height of exactly 535 millimeters, the fording depth that Audi allows for the highest off-road position of the chassis . The good news first: You won't get wet feet in the Q7. The not-so-good news: see under evaluation 'Wading behavior'.

Trial track not the world of the Audi Q7

Another exercise that should obviously be avoided as much as possible is circling through narrow passages. On the trial track, the Audi revealed what, given its stately dimensions - it is even wider than the Mercedes GL - we already suspected: fun is different.

The air suspension system in the Q7 is familiar from VW Touareg and Porsche Cayenne, which are based on the same platform. However, Audi has managed to achieve residual comfort even in the highest off-road position, the crew is not shaken so vehemently on bumps and potholes. This was particularly evident on the scree slope. Another detail: As with the Mitsubishi Pajero, the hill descent control is calibrated so that it only intervenes when a wheel loses contact with the ground. She spoke on the scree slope, but unfortunately not on the inclines with solid ground due to the system. It's a shame - a simple switch with which the hill descent control can be manually called for help in any terrain would be the more sensible solution. Not only there, but also on smooth, steep mountain roads, with an unladen weight of 2.4 tons, this could contribute to driving safety. As it was, however, the Q7 achieved the worst result so far in the super test on the uphill tracks in the downhill classification, even the Daihatsu Terios, which is also free of reduction, was better here.

There are better areas of application for the thick ship from the south: grinding , dig, root for example. Regardless of whether on a wet meadow when maneuvering a horse trailer or on the run from everyday life through Africa: When it comes to converting the remarkable engine power into propulsion in conjunction with the perfectly shifting six-speed automatic, the Q7 plays a big movie. Nobody misses a reduction or a mechanical axle lock,because then there is only one direction: forward. Even if the apparently omniscient computer occasionally intervenes and makes decisions that the conventionally working brain of the average off-road driver cannot fully understand: for example, reducing the engine power when it comes to the proverbial sausage. But ultimately the Ingolstadt giant digs its way through.

And that is the actually surprising result of the super test: When it comes to getting from A to B very comfortably, the Q7 is not just on asphalt in the truest sense Sense a size. It even plowed its way through when you pull the rip cord in technically more suitable thoroughbred off-road vehicles and let all hope go.


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