Audi has just updated its Q7 for 2020 and the SUV offers a sporty variant dubbed the SQ7 TDI.
Unfortunately, the SQ7 TDI is a diesel, which means it won't reach the United States. The previous SQ7 TDI also skipped our market.
That's a real shame, because the SQ7 TDI's engine is one of the most advanced on the market, and the vehicle it powers would make a great alternative to the BMW X5 M50i and Mercedes-AMG GLE53.
2020 Audi SQ7 TDI
The engine is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 with 429 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, the latter of which is available from just 1,250 rpm. With so much grunt on tap, the SQ7 TDI accelerates effortlessly from 0-62 mph in 4.8 seconds and on to a top speed capped at 155 mph.
What makes the engine so advanced is its electric compressor, which is powered by a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. The electric compressor sits in the air path downstream of the intercooler, close to the engine, and works like a supercharger or turbocharger. It spins at up to 70,000 rpm almost instantaneously and provides boost, filling in until the pair of turbochargers take over so the engine remains always on the boil. Boost pressure arrives in less than 250 milliseconds, according to Audi.
The engine is mated to an 8-speed automatic and all-wheel-drive system. Air suspension, speed-sensitive steering, and all-wheel steering are all standard. To further shore up the handling, buyers can add an electronic damping system that can individually adjust the suspension damping at each wheel. An electronic differential for the rear is also available and has the ability to split drive between each of the rear wheels for extra traction when cornering hard.
2020 Audi SQ7 TDI
Other performance mods include an active exhaust system, powerful brakes, and 20-inch wheels wrapped in 285/45-size tires. The standard brakes feature 15.7- and 13.8-inch rotors front and rear, respectively, but these can be updated with carbon-ceramic rotors measuring 16.5 inches up front and 14.6 inches in the rear.
Being based on the updated Q7, the latest SQ7 TDI sports a revised front fascia with new internals for the lights and a new shape for the grille. The interior is where the biggest change has happened, as there is a new dash with the center stack now consisting of a pair of digital screens—one for the infotainment and another for climate settings.
Audi also offers a related SQ8 TDI, and since it too is a diesel we won't be seeing it on local shores. Fortunately, Audi Sport is cooking up an RS Q8 with a gasoline engine, and this model is almost certain to be sold here.