The wait is over. After a not-so-surprising-but-apparently-surprising-to-Audi leak over the weekend, Audi has officially unveiled the Audi A7 Sportback and they describe it as a combination of elegant coupe, sport sedan, and practical wagon. The five-door, fastback coupe sees four different engine options –two gas, two diesel – and comes with features such as standard bi-xenon headlights, optional LED headlights, standard LED tail lights, and "all-weather light function." We can’t really decide what we think about the new A7 yet, so we’ll just go ahead and give you the facts so you can decide.
The 2011 Audi A7 Sportback will hit the streets with a 2.8 FSI engine producing 201hp and 280Nm, a 3.0 TFSI engine that produces 296hp and 440Nm, a 3.0 TDI producing 210hp and 400Nm, and a 3.0 TDI producing 242hp and 500Nm. These engines will be mated to a Multitronic CVT automatic for front-wheel-drive versions and a seven-speed S tronic twin-clutch transmission for quattro models. The 3.0 TDI multitronic will make the 0-62mph sprint in 8.1 seconds while top speed is limited to 145mph. Its fuel efficiency is rated at a combined 53.3mpg. We are unaware of whether or not all four engines will be available in the States, but we are guessing the diesel options won’t make it to this side of the pond.
Updated 12/13/2010: Audi has unveiled a new commercial for the A7 Sportback called Imagination Meets Engineering. Enjoy!
Updated 04/04/2011: Audi of America has announced today prices for the A7 Sportback that will go on sale later this month. Prices will start from $59,250 for the A7 3.0T quattro Tiptronic version, excluding $875 destination charge, taxes, title, options, and dealer charges.
Hit the jump for the full story and press release.
All variants of the Audi A7 will come with thermal management, energy recuperation, and stop-start systems. The A7 Sportback will also feature a new touchpad input interface for the MMI infotainment system, Audi’s first heads-up display (HUD), WLAN hotspot functionality, a Bose standard sound system (Bang & Olufsen upgrade available), Google services, and Bluetooth connectivity. Apart from the standard equipment offered, the Audi A7 Sportback will also have parallel park assist, all-LED headlights, head-up display, and adaptive air suspension available as options.
The Sportback sits on an all new platform exclusive to Audi that features a five link front and trapezoidal link rear suspension system. This suspension allows for a 10mm lower sport setting or an S line configuration. The A7 shares the same length as the Audi A6 and, it must be said, a lot of the same design. Slap a hatch on the A6 and add some sharper lines and you just may have the A7.
The Audi A7 Sportback will compete with models like the Mercedes-Benz CLS, the Porsche Panamera, and the Aston Martin Rapide and is scheduled to hit dealerships in the Fall with orders opening for the UK on August 16th. Prices for this model will start at £42,925 in the UK.
The sought-after Audi Sportback formula can now be enjoyed on an even grander scale in the all new A7 Sportback, which in a similar vein to its A5 namesake discreetly integrates saloon car versatility and hatchback practicality into an elegant premium coupe silhouette. By reinterpreting the concept for the larger executive class, the A7 Sportback will project the Vorsprung durch Technik brand into yet another new segment when it joins the UK range as its 35th member in January 2011, priced from £42,925.
As befits its positioning as an unashamedly luxurious yet also distinctly driver-oriented five-door performance coupe, the new A7 Sportback will initially offer a choice of four FSI petrol and TDI engines delivering exhilarating pulling power with limousine-like polish. The naturally aspirated 204PS 2.8-litre FSI and supercharged 300PS 3.0-litre TFSI petrol units will be complemented by two versions of the acclaimed 3.0-litre TDI in 204PS and 245PS forms.
For the first time in Audi models at this level, these will be combined with the rapid-shifting seven-speed S tronic twin-clutch sports transmission wherever quattro four-wheel-drive is installed. The quattro all-wheel-drive system appears in latest generation form with 40%:60% rear bias and featuring the crown gear differential first seen in the RS 5, which can vary torque distribution between the front and rear axles even more widely for even greater agility.
The Audi drive select adaptive dynamics system will be fitted as standard to all models, enabling the driver to fine tune steering weighting, throttle response and transmission shift points at the touch of a button. The keenest performance enthusiasts will also be able to specify the optional quattro sport differential enabling torque transfer between the rear wheels, which has been much praised in the S4 and RS 5 for the even greater handling adjustability it brings.
Start-stop for all engines
Drivers with a greater bias towards economy and long distance comfort will also be well catered for by the A7 Sportback. The latest direct injection technology puts its engine range at the forefront of efficiency, and all four units also combine innovative Audi thermal management, energy recuperation during coasting and braking and the now familiar engine start-stop function.
With the added benefit of new engine load-reducing electromechanical power steering, and the fuel-sparing, torque converter-free Audi multitronic continuously variable automatic transmission fitted as standard to front-wheel-drive versions, fuel economy of up to 53.3mpg, and CO2 of as little as 139g/km is possible if the 3.0 TDI (204PS) is specified.
Economy can also be further optimized when the standard satellite navigation system is upgraded to MMI navigation plus, the detailed route data from which can be used to factor corners into the automatic transmission’s shift strategy and avoid unnecessary, fuel-sapping gear changes. The optional adaptive cruise control and adaptive light swivelling cornering light systems are also influenced by feedback from the navigation unit.
To reduce power usage still further, and give the A7 Sportback an even more imposing look, customers can also specify extremely energy efficient all-LED headlights at extra cost. These units with their incredibly distinctive, almost daylight-like beams, incorporate special cornering, all-weather and motorway light configurations.
All new platform
A completely new and exclusive-to-Audi platform employing advanced five link front and trapezoidal link rear suspension system will bring impeccable comfort and control to the new A7 Sportback, and can be specified with a firmer, 10mm lower sport setting or an even more intensively handling-oriented S line configuration. For drivers craving maximum continent-crossing refinement an extensively revised version of the Audi adaptive air suspension system with three ride settings will be offered as an option.
In terms of size the new A7 Sportback stands almost toe to toe with the current A6 Saloon with a length of 4.97m and width of 1,91m, although its elegantly tapered coupe roofline ensures that it sits even more purposefully on the road. The executive class dimensions are reflected in executive class interior space for up to four adults, and when luggage takes precedence up to 1,390 litres of capacity can be made available and is easily accessible via the long tailgate with its standard motorized operation, which also enables the precise opening angle to be set via buttons on the hatch.
The dramatic, flowing lines that provide stunning camouflage for these practical elements and also permit an impressive drag coefficient of 0.28 have been sculpted using a high proportion of aluminium that ensures the rigid body shell weighs around 15 per cent less than an equivalent all-steel shell. Similarly sweeping curves also enfold passengers in the opulent cabin, which exudes quality, luxury and technological ingenuity in equal measure in the best traditions of Audi.
Two specification levels - SE and S line – will be offered in the UK, and an impressive ‘core’ equipment list will be common to both. This will include xenon headlamps with LED tail lamps, powered tailgate operation, leather upholstery, electric seat adjustment and heating, cruise and parking controls, satellite navigation, the Audi Music Interface (AMI), DAB digital radio and Bluetooth phone preparation.
The ‘hub’ of the interior is the advanced Multi Media Interface (MMI) system with retractable 6.5-inch monitor, which with its large central control knob and reduced number of buttons is now even more intuitive to use when operating the standard high end audio and navigation systems and the Bluetooth phone interface.
MMI will be upgradeable at extra cost to MMI Touch with its 8-inch monitor and fingertip sensitive touch pad as seen first in the new A8. As well as ultra-intelligent 3D navigation mapping, the new MMI Touch system can store audio tracks and telephone data on its sizeable hard disk. To enter a destination or phone number, the driver need only draw the required letters or numbers with their index finger on the touch pad.
As an option, a GPRS module will be available which will be fed with news and weather information from the Web by internet service provider Google, and will make it possible for drivers to plot detailed routes on a home computer and download them to the navigation system when they start a trip. An optional UMTS module will also enable Google Earth images to be beamed to the MMI monitor in 3D for navigation purposes, and through its wireless WLAN link will make full internet connection available to passengers using their own computers.
A7 Sportback debut for new head-up display
For the first time in a production Audi, a ‘head-up’ display will be available at extra cost in the A7 Sportback. The sophisticated system will project key information, including economy and speed data and navigation routing onto the windscreen so that it appears to float at a distance of around 2.5 metres ahead of the driver.
Another key option that is new to Audi models of this size is the park assist system. Using ultrasonic sensors that detect parallel and horizontal parking spaces, the system can completely take over the steering function when parking at the touch of a button, leaving the driver responsible only for throttle and brake application as required.
The list of optional driver aids will also include a night vision assistant employing a thermal imaging camera to highlight persons in front of the car, the Audi side assist blind spot warning system, the Audi lane assist lane departure detection system and the new Audi pre-sense system first seen in the new A8. In its standard form pre-sense analyzes the information from the ESP sensors and intervenes to activate the hazard warning lights, close the side windows and sunroof and tension the seatbelts when maximum brake application or skidding is detected.
The pre-sense system can be expanded in various stages at extra cost: the full version brakes the car automatically in order to minimize the consequences of a nose-to-tail collision.
Among the more indulgent options available are comfort seats with heating, cooling and massaging functions, acoustic glazing, supple leather trimming for the centre console, a 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system with 1,300 watts of power, TV reception and various connectivity upgrades for the MMI system.
Audi Sportback goes large –The new A7 Sportback, which projects Audi into a new market segment by combining saloon car versatility, hatchback practicality and coupe elegance for the executive class, is due to arrive in the UK in early 2011 priced from £42,925 OTR.