Premium large SUV; Built in Germany
  • 4-door wagon
  • longitudinal front-engine/all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $12,100 – $57,100*


2008 Audi Q7


2008 Audi Q7


2008 Audi Q7


2008 Audi Q7


2008 Audi Q7

Pros:
  • Cargo room
  • Quietness
  • Ride
  • Seat comfort
  • Steering/handling
Cons:
  • Fuel economy (except turbodiesel)
  • Passenger room (third row comfort and access)

Recognizing that vehicles in this class are more about coddling occupants than carrying cargo, and need to make a style statement in the process, the Q7 fits the premium large SUV bill. Still, the Q7’s third-row room, comfort, and access are hostile to adults. Fuel economy with the 4.2-liter V8 is frightful. Even so, the Q7 earns our Recommended nod for mechanical finesse and terrific all-weather road manners. Audi design and workmanship also appeal.

Overview

Audi’s first sport-utility vehicle was loosely based on the Touareg from parent-company Volkswagen. Equipped with standard all-wheel drive, the Q7 differed from the VW Touareg in styling, equipment, and price. Larger in size, the Q7 seated up to seven, versus the Touareg’s five-passenger capacity. Rivals included the Cadillac Escalade and Mercedes-Benz GL-Class.

Two versions of the Q7 were offered: the 3.6 model with a 280-horsepower V6, and the 4.2 with a 350-horsepower V8. Both had a six-speed automatic transmission and Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive, without low-range gearing. In 2009 a turbodiesel engine was added. Antilock braking and traction/antiskid control with rollover sensors were standard. So were front side airbags and curtain side airbags for all seating rows. Second-row side airbags were optional, as were 20-inch wheels and a driver-adjustable air suspension with height control.

Each Q7 model came in base or Premium form. The 4.2 Premium added such conveniences as rear obstacle detection and four-zone automatic climate control. All Q7s included Audi’s MMI (Multi Media Interface). It used a dashboard screen and a console knob, and switches to set audio, navigation, suspension, and many other functions. Among available Q7 features were a voice-activated navigation system with rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, keyless entry and starting, and a three-panel sunroof. Also available was Audi’s Side Assist sensor system, which used flashing lights in the side mirrors to warn of vehicles in blind spots.

Yearly Updates

2008 Q7
In its second season on the market, Audi’s Q7 earned some standard-equipment and option revisions. The base 3.6 model added leather seating surfaces up front. The 3.6 Premium model included a power tailgate, third-row seating, and Audi’s parking system with a rearview camera. Audi’s DVD-based navigation system, Advanced key system, and 20-inch alloy wheels went on the 4.2 Premium wagon.
2009 Q7
The 2009 Audi Q7 lineup gained a new turbodiesel model. Added was the 3.0 TDI quattro with a 221-hp 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6.
2010 Q7
The 2010 Audi Q7 received slightly freshened styling and a revised version of Audi’s MMI (Multi Media Interface).
2011 Q7
The 2011 Audi Q7 received new gasoline powertrains and a new transmission for its diesel model. The V6 and V8 gas engines were replaced by a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 with 272 horsepower in the 3.0T Premium, 333 in the 3.0T S Line Prestige. All engines, including the carryover turbodiesel, were mated to a new eight-speed automatic transmission.
2012 Q7
The only change of note to the 2012 Audi Q7 was a slight power increase for its standard 3.0-liter supercharged V6, which went from 272 horsepower to 280.
2013 Q7
Q7 gained a redesigned turbodiesel engine for 2013.
2014 Q7
The Q7 had few changes for 2014.

Engines

longitudinal front-engine/all-wheel drive

Five different powertrains have been available. The Q7 3.6 uses a 3.6-liter V6 engine, while the Q7 4.2 has a 4.2-liter V8. Both engines team with a six-speed automatic transmission and Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive. For 2009, a 3.0-liter turbodiesel was added, also with the six-speed automatic. For 2011, the V6 and V8 gas engines were replaced by a pair of supercharged 3.0-liter V6s, one with 272 horsepower, the other with 333, both mated to an eight-speed automatic. The 272-hp version grew to 280 hp for 2012.

Turbodiesel dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.0/183
Engine HP 225
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 406
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic
8-speed automatic
17/25
17/25
25.8

Turbodiesel dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.0/181
Engine HP 240
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 406
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
8-speed automatic

19/28

Supercharged dohc V62
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.0/183
Engine HP 272-280
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 295
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
8-speed automatic

16/22

dohc V61
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.6/220
Engine HP 280
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 266
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic

14/20

17.1

Supercharged dohc V63
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.0/183
Engine HP 333
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 325
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
8-speed automatic

16/22

dohc V81
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 4.2/254
Engine HP 350
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 325
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic

12/17

12.8

1.EPA Note: Figures shown are for 2008 models. The Environmental Protection Agency changed its procedure for 2008 to yield more realistic estimates. Therefore, estimated mileage is lower than for prior years. 2. 3.0T Premium. 3. 3.0T S Line Prestige.

Road Test

No 2011 models with the new 3.0-liter supercharged engine and eight-speed automatic have tested so far. In prior-year models, acceleration isn’t totally consistent. The 3.6s are pleasantly peppy in around-town driving, cruising with ease, but they need a deep stab of throttle for decent passing power at highway speeds. Audi claimed 0-60 mph acceleration in 8.2 seconds. Several testers found throttle response to be nonlinear. The 4.2s have slight delay in response from a rolling stop, but are strong enough otherwise to justify Audi’s claim of 7.0-second 0-60 mph acceleration. On both, the transmission is generally responsive, even velvety and alert, enhanced by convenient steering-wheel shift paddles in the sporty S line package. Maximum towing capacity is 6600 pounds.

Fuel economy varies with the engine. An extended-use 3.6 Premium model averaged 17.1 mpg, while a test 4.2 Premium model averaged 12.8 mpg. Audi recommends premium-grade fuel for both engines.

Best results in ride comfort come from leaving the optional driver-adjustable air suspension in “automatic” mode, where it quells pitch and float on wavy surfaces and smothers most bumps with little thumping-even on available 20-inch tires. Even in Comfort mode, however, ride quality does not qualify as gentle when the pavement turns rough.

More agile and carlike than most large SUVs, the Q7 exhibits rock-solid straightline tracking. Still, the elevated stance and high weight demand slowing for tight corners, despite modest body lean versus others in its class. Steering is firm and slop-free at highway speeds, and usefully light for parking. But some testers have insisted that the turning circle was too wide. Braking is swift, smooth, and undramatic, but several testers found them hard to modulate for smooth stops.

Both engines emit a classy full-throttle growl, which drops to a subdued burble otherwise. Moderate wind rush is evident by 70 mph. Available 20-inch tires generate audible coarse-surface thrum.

Inside the Q7, the dashboard and center console are loaded with buttons and switches, despite the aim of the MMI system to reduce such clutter. The MMI system thoughtfully leaves routine climate adjustments to separate controls, but it absorbs most audio functions, rendering many of them distracting and time-consuming. Interacting with MMI for navigation and vehicle-system settings also takes time. First-rate finish and furnishings help justify luxury-level Q7 pricing.

Legroom is fine up front, but some taller testers declared head space just adequate for six-footers. Firm seats are long-haul comfortable and have a multitude of adjustments. Power-adjustable pedals have been unavailable, but a tilt/telescopic steering column (powered on 4.2 models) has been standard. The sunroof’s powered interior shade is mesh, not opaque, so some sunlight will always get through. Thick roofline pillars impede views to some corners and dead-astern, though the optional rearview camera (if installed) compensates. Step-in is a bit high, but manageable.

Passengers entering the backseat face the same slightly steep step-in, but wide doors give easy access to the second row’s ample leg space and acceptable headroom. Outboard sections of the firm 40/20/40 split bench slide fore/aft to favor passenger or cargo space, but the seat itself is a tad cramped for three adults. Twin bucket seats have been optional. Access to the 50/50 split third-row bench is a squeeze even for kids, as is space back there.

Cargo volume trails some rivals. Audi lists 11 cubic feet behind the third-row seat, 42 with it stowed, and 72.5 cubic feet with all rear seats down. The last figure is mediocre for this class, explained by a high cargo floor and low roofline. Still, the load floor is flat with any seats folded, and headrests don’t need to be removed. Erecting the folded third-row seats demands a long stretch from the tail or rear side doors. Plentiful cabin storage is provided for cups, bottles, and miscellaneous items.

Ratings

Model Tested: 2008 Q7 3.6 Premium w/air suspension

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 5
50%
Fuel Economy - 4
40%
Ride Quality - 7
70%
Steering/Handling - 6
60%
Quietness - 7
70%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 7
70%
Room/Comfort Front - 8
80%
Room/Comfort Rear - 6
60%
Cargo Room - 9
90%

Other

Value - 7
70%

Total: 66

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
118.2 200.2 78.1 68.4
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
72.5 2.64 7.0
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.5 39.0 41.3 37.1
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: N/A

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Front Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Air springs
Description: The vehicle may pull while driving and may suffer uneven ride height due to a bad check valve in one or more of the air springs. (2007-10)
Doors
Description: A cold air leak may be felt at the door gap on vehicles with dual zone A/C due to loose grill in the B-pillar. (2007)
Doors
Description: In cold weather, the exterior door handles may not work because water gets into the release cable and freezes requiring a new cable. (2007-10)
Fuel pump
Description: Metallic particles in the fuel pump can cause rough running or failure to start. (2009-12)
Steering problems
Description: Steering wheel vibrations could be caused by a front driveshaft imbalance. (2007)
Steering problems
Description: Power adjustable steering wheel may fail to adjust vertically because of improper tolerances. (2007-14)
Sunroof/moonroof
Description: The rear sunroof may reverse direction during closing due to high friction caused by the shade being jammed. (2007)
Sunroof/moonroof
Description: Water may leak from the sunroof if the drain hose is kinked or plugged, but may also be due to insufficient sealing of the corners during production. (2007)
Headlights
Description: Automatic headlights may switch on or off too quickly, too slowly or randomly if windshield is not replaced properly. (2007-08)
Headlights
Description: Headlights flicker at highway speeds or do not illuminate dashboard indicator light. (2010-2015)
Electrical problem
Description: Wiring harness could be pinched by sunroof causing some electrical components to become inoperable and also stop battery charging. (2007-14)
Electrical problem
Description: Faulty back-up camera. (2009-14)
Brake lights
Description: The parking brake light may stay on after releasing the brake due the parking brake damper wearing out. (2007-09)
Check-engine light
Description: The check engine light may illuminate and a trouble code may be set for the fuel system because fuel leaks into the fuel pressure sensor for which there is an improved part. (2007)

Recall History

2007-08 Q7
Description: If one of the struts for the automatic-closing decklid suffers total pressure loss, lid could shut rapidly, creating risk of injury.
2012-13 Q7
Description: Possible fuel leak that could result in fire.
2013 Q& TDI
Description: An engine oil leak could enter the brake booster causing a loss power brake assist.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.