Audi’s Q7 SUV lost a lot of weight for 2016, 716 pounds in fact, but now it’s time to bulk back up.
The German brand has confirmed to Top Gear that a muscular, high-performance version of the Q7 SUV is in the works, which may be badged RS Q7.
Top Gear’s source didn’t go into specifics as to what would power the hopped-up SUV, but it could feature an electric turbocharger as we reported last June. The current range-topper equips a 3.0-liter TDI V6 mated to an electric motor and 17.3-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery.
Diesels aren’t typically found at the top of a vehicle’s performance range, but the e-tron diesel plug-in hybrid generates a combined output of 373 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. That’s good for a 6.0-second sprint to 62 mph and a top speed of just under 140 mph.
According to Top Gear’s insider, a more powerful diesel hybrid could be the answer.
“The question is what the better engine would be for a car like this,” said the unnamed source. “Would it be a diesel or an FSI [petrol]? Perhaps a diesel, but maybe not a V12 because it’s too heavy.”
Perhaps a diesel V8 or V10 with electric boost? With carbon fiber and a cherry on top?
The Q7 is already Audi’s biggest SUV, but in RS guise, it could be the king of the lineup.
With its aluminum doors, front fenders, and hood, the Q7 is in a much better spot as far as handling goes than many of its competitors. The planned performance version will likely be even lighter and lower, with plenty of testing done at that famous track in Germany.
“Every Audi is tested around the Nürburgring – every car, even the Q7 – but it’s not scary,” said Audi. “It will be great, a high performance Q7. We have the perfect solution for that sportive SUV.”