Audi has been perfecting Diesel engine technology in cars since the 1970s. Their latest generation can be seen in the turbo diesel lineup (TDI). Vehicles include the A6, A7, A8, Q5, and Q7. I had the pleasure of testing the 2014 Audi Q7 TDI for a week.
Diesel Engines Vs Gasoline Engines
A majority of cars in the United States are gasoline engines. Diesel engines have primarily been reserved for commercial and construction vehicles because they have a reputation of being noisy, but offer increased fuel efficiency and the engines produce a lot of torque. You will see them in semi-trucks, busses, and tractors in the US – Over in Europe you will see them everywhere, from family sedans to sports cars.
Performance Minded Diesel Engines
Modern Diesel engines are breaking the stereotype. By adding turbo chargers, these engines are powerful both at low and high RPMs. They have also been engineered to be quieter and have less vibration than previous generations. In 2006, Audi added a diesel engine to their Le Mans race car, the Audi R10 TDI, and won the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Behind the wheel of the Audi Q7 TDI Quattro Tiptronic
The Q7 TDI is Audi’s largest and most powerful SUV. My friend Kyle describes it is a beast! With it’s aggressive styling and high torque engine, I couldn’t agree more. The Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights are really cool too! Under the hood, you will find a 3.0L 6-cylinder turbo diesel engine that produces 240hp and 406 pounds of torque. The high torque and 8-speed Tiptronic transmission attribute to the car’s quick acceleration (quick for a large SUV).
The model I was driving included some high-tech premium accessories, such as adaptive cruise control, corner view camera system, a navigation system with Google Maps, and a Bang & Olufsen Sound System. The adaptive cruise control is one of my favorite accessories – it adjusts your speed based on the car in front of you. Audi’s navigation system is the best in the world, because it uses Google’s Mapping software to always give current route information. The only downside is that you have to pay for a monthly data plan to use it.
Inside the car, you will find premium leather seats, aluminum trim finishings, and an Alcantara headliner. The Alcantara headliner added an ultra-luxury feel to the car; The last car I drove with a suede like headliner was the $322,000 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante. You will also find a panoramic sunroof and four zone climate control, both which benefit the rear passengers. The car has three sets of seating, so it can easily fit a family of 7 or carry all of your best buds to a Miami Dolphins game. The power tailgate, rear power outlets, and Bang & Olufsen Sound System will make you the king of the parking lot for tailgating!
The Bang & Olufsen Sound System adds another layer of cool, because the speakers pop out of the dash. B&O also makes the best sound systems in the world. But in order to take full advantaged of the high-definition speakers, you need to be using CDs, an HD radio or satellite radio. Regular FM radio, internet radio, and MP3’s used compressed audio and won’t take full advantage of the sound system.
The Q7 is also a great car for off-roading and winter weather driving. The all-wheel drive system and electronic stability control will help you grip the road/trail. If you are truly off roading and need extra ground clearance you can raise the car using air suspension. Once you get back on the highway, the car will automatically lower itself to reduce wind resistance and improve fuel economy.
The Audi Q7 TDI is a versatile vehicle. From taking a family road trip, to exploring in the wilderness, the Audi Q7 TDI has you covered. It has got power, great fuel economy, loads of tech, plenty of room, and it can go anywhere.