Let me begin with my standard response anytime someone asks about an Audi that I happen to be evaluating.
“It’s an Audi. What more do you need to know?”
This week I had the opportunity to log driving time in the 2016 A7, which certainly lives up to the German automaker’s mission of building exciting luxury-performance automobiles that turn heads while stimulating driving enthusiasts.
The A7 is part of Audi’s 7 Series lineup, which includes the A7 TDI, S7 and RS7.
Equipped with Audi’s quarto all-wheel drive system, the five-passenger A7 sedan has a base price starting at $69,300 and is powered by a 3.0-liter supercharged V-6 engine delivering 333 horsepower and 325 lbs.-ft. torque. This is 23 more horsepower over the previous model. Mated to an eight-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission, it has an EPA fuel economy rating of 20 mpg city, 30 mpg highway.
The A7 is roomy, extremely comfortable and nimble as a cat with a 0-60 mph time of 5.2 seconds and a top track speed of 130 mph.
There were only a few, minor changes for the 2016 model, which include:
• Next generation of Audi MMI provides AT&T 4G LTE data connection and in-car wifi for passenger devices supported through NVIDIA Tegra processing power.
• New suite of Audi connect services include INRIX online traffic info, Apple Siri Eyes Free integration and Web radio streaming
• Front fascia receives new design for LED headlights, Single-frame grille and bumpers; rear design includes LED taillights and integrated trapezoidal tailpipes on all A7 models.
• Two new interior colors, four new inlays and two new “design selections” available: Cedar brown and Arras red.
This week’s test vehicle was also equipped with the optional Driver Assistance package, which included Audi adaptive cruise control with stop & go features; Audi pre-sense plus; Audi active lane assist; corner view camera system and high-beam assist.
It was also a Prestige trim level model, which included Audi’s head-up display system, LED interior lighting and the Bose surround sound audio system.
Now that the weather is starting to turn a little chilly, I think my favorite feature this week was the heated seats — which I used on a daily basis.
The Audi A7 is a very impressive performance-luxury sedan. I can’t wait to test drive the RS 7, which is equipped with the 560 horsepower supercharged V-8 engine.
For those in the market for a performance-luxury sedan, the Audi 7 Series is an absolute must for the test drive list. The most difficult decision will be deciding which model you like best.
Neal White has been covering the automotive industry for more than 20 years and is affiliated with the Texas Auto Writers Association.