It seems hard to believe, but the striking Audi A7 has been around for nine model years. In an ever increasing sea of SUV’s and crossovers, it’s refreshing to see Audi make an effort to deliver such a sensuous four door. The A7 occupies a curious place within their sedan line. Based on the A6, yet offering near A8 levels of luxury, the A7 may sound like an Audi jumble of cars, but one look at the car tells you it is all about keeping appearances. The A7 simply oozes elegance. Subdued, sexy, alluring, walking around this car, you are struck that luxury should be effortless, the A7 is luxury personified. This is not a faddish car. Although the A7 seen here is the new, second generation model, even a nine year A7 is still remarkably gorgeous. The new car is a careful evolution of the four door sportback concept. This is a timeless design. In the future, I wonder if generations down the road will wonder about our obsessions driving very tall station wagons as we do now, but regardless of time, the A7 stands proud as one of the handsomest sedans available at this time.
Audi is no stranger to constructing gorgeous interiors, and the A7 is no exception. A luxury car can mean different things to different people, but I seek two qualities. One it should be an oasis from the outside world. Two, it should feel special-when you slip in behind the wheel, it should immediately feel like you have stepped into an exceptional car. And the A7 excels here. Everything you see and touch is of exceptional quality. The wood, the metal accents, the leather all combine to make for a bona fide luxury car experience. The cabin is so inviting, this is a car that simply begs you to bask in its opulence. Waking up on a summer’s Saturday, the A7 was the perfect companion for a jaunt to Newport, Rhode Island, one of the most luxurious destinations on the east coast. The A7 happily cossetted me on an effortless journey, as you can see the car, as pictured on Newport’s gorgeous Ocean Drive on the Atlantic. Dinner that night was at the extravagant Ocean House, a five star hotel in more subdued Watch Hill, Rhode Island. After a fantastic experience, the valet pulls up with the car. As he hands it off to me, he remarks what a special car this is, which says something coming from a guy who spends his days parking only the finest luxury cars.
The A7 is powered by a 3.0L turbo V-6, good for 335hp, paired to a seven speed automatic, and of course, quattro all-wheel drive. We live in a world where you can buy a 301hp Toyota Camry, so this figure sounds unremarkable, but in the real world, the A7 delivers all the performance you’d want. And there is little doubt there will be S7 and RS7 versions in the near future. The commands presence on the interstate. It is a completely relaxed tourer, yet ready to pass and obliterate slower traffic in an instance. Handling is superb, though I’d have welcomed a little more steering feel. This car is simply a joy to drive, so the day after my stint in Rhode Island, I was only too happy to jump back in the A7 for a drive to lunch to the Instagram perfect little harbor town of Stonington, Connecticut.
In case you haven’t gotten the message by now, the Audi A7 is a true luxury car, and not some poseur. The A7 starts at $67,000USD, and, on the surface, comes with about every feature you might want. Our test car had the Prestige package, which kicks things up a notch with a 10″ navigation screen, Audi’s virtual cockpit with mind blowing Google Earth navigation (everything else is Commodore 64 tech compared to this), exceptional Bang & Olufsen audio, four zone climate control, dual pane acoustic glass, head up display and ventilated front seats. Adding 20″ alloys, Individual Contour Seating Package, Driver Assistance Package, and Cold Weather Package, our A7 rings in at $85,240USD. An impressive figure, yes, but I can say without hesitation the A7 feels like it is actually worth it. In fact, this is a car that would feel right at home with other premium luxury cars from BMW and Mercedes that cost substantially more.
The idea of a four door coupe is magnificently on display with the new A7. We are in an age of superbly elegant luxury sedans, which are unfortunately often overlooked with the masses snapping up crossovers. And that is a shame. But those smart enough, and individualistic enough, will see the elegant A7, and the practicality its hatchback design offers, and appreciate a driving experience those top heavy boxes cannot provide. When the first A7 was shown to the world in 2009, I was in love. After living with the A7 for a week, I can tell you, it was worth the wait.