2016 Audi A7

Starting MSRP: $68,300 - $106,500

Estimated MPG: 20 city / 30 hwy

2016 Audi A7 Review

The 2016 Audi A7 offers an impressive mix of style, luxury and performance. For 2016, Audi adds to the A7's charm with a bump in power, updated styling and revamped tech features.

By Jim Sharifi
Last Updated 05/03/2016

The 2016 Audi A7 comes in Premium Plus and Prestige trims, which feature a standard supercharged V6 engine or an optional turbodiesel V6. High-performance S7 and RS 7 variants are also offered, which come with turbocharged V8 engines that provide a significant boost in power.

For 2016 the Audi A7 gains updated exterior styling and a revamped MMI infotainment system that offers a 4G LTE data connection. There's more power too, as the A7's supercharged V6 has been retuned to produce 333 horsepower, 23 more than the outgoing model. The S7 also gains 30 horsepower for the 2016 model year, now with a total output of 450 horsepower.

Exterior

Exterior
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The Audi A7 stood out as one of the most attractive luxury large cars when it was introduced for the 2012 model year. That still holds true today, as the A7 features coupelike styling and clean lines that manage to draw you in without becoming too flashy or ostentatious.

For 2016, the A7 gains an updated grille, as well as revamped LED headlights and daytime running lights. New ground effects provide a sportier look on the sides, while the back end is accented by an adaptive spoiler, an updated bumper design and dual exhaust pipes with chrome finishers. 

The base A7 comes standard with 19-inch wheels, which can be upgraded with a selection of optional 19- and 20-inch wheels.

Interior

Interior
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The 2016 A7's cabin offers an attractive design and exceptional fit and finish. Premium materials cover nearly every surface, and even the base A7 offers features like a sunroof, leather upholstery, wood trim, four-zone automatic climate control and heated, power-adjustable front seats.

Our test A7 Prestige also included LED interior lighting accents and ventilated front seats, while an optional Cold Weather package brought in features like a heated steering wheel and heated rear seats.

The A7's hatchback design results in notably more cargo space than you'll find in competing luxury cars. There's 24.5 cubic feet of cargo room, which can be expanded by lowering the 60/40 split-folding rear seats. The front seats are exceptionally roomy and comfortable, and a wide range of adjustments makes it easy to find a comfortable driving position. The A7 offers a reasonable amount of back-seat passenger space as well, though taller passengers may want a bit more headroom than the sloping roofline provides.

Performance

Performance
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The 2016 Audi A7 comes with a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that produces 333 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque. Opt for the A7 TDI and you'll get a turbodiesel 3.0-liter V6 with 240 horsepower and 428 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard on both models.

Audi also offers two high-performance models: the S7 and RS 7. S7 models feature a turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 that produces 450 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. The top-tier RS 7 also features a turbocharged 4.0-liter V8, but in this application it puts out a substantial 560 horsepower and 516 pound feet of torque.

The S7 comes with a seven-speed automated manual transmission, while the RS 7 has an eight-speed automatic.

The EPA reports that the base A7 gets 20/30 mpg city/highway, which is slightly better than what you'll get from competitors like the Mercedes-Benz CLS400 4Matic and BMW 640i xDrive Gran Coupe. Choose the A7 TDI and fuel economy is better still, at an EPA-estimated 25/38 mpg city/highway.

Our test A7 came with the supercharged V6, which offered ample power in just about every situation during a week's worth of driving. The eight-speed automatic transmission is smooth and alert, responding quickly when more power is called for. The steering is a little light for my tastes, but it responds quickly and offers a turning radius that's small enough to make the A7 easy to maneuver in tight spaces. When called upon, our test car offered athletic handling that made it a joy to drive on twisty roads. The ride remained comfortable too, even with the available sport suspension and 20-inch wheels.

Technology

Technology
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The 2016 A7 comes with a 10-speaker audio system, two USB ports, Bluetooth, HD Radio, satellite radio and Audi's MMI navigation system with an 8-inch display. Also standard is a configurable 7-inch color display between the speedometer and tachometer, which can be set to show navigation, phone, entertainment or trip information. 

Rounding out the standard tech features is Audi Connect, which includes a 4G LTE data connection that provides Wi-Fi access and Google Earth views for the navigation system. A subscription is required after a complimentary six-month trial.

A 14-speaker Bose audio system or a 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system are available as options.

Start the A7 up and the central 8-inch display rises from the dash, providing access to entertainment, navigation, phone and vehicle settings. Those settings can be accessed through a central MMI control knob, or a touch pad on the center console that allows you to select radio presets or write out navigation destinations with your fingertip. Many of these functions can also be accessed through steering wheel controls and the display that's housed within the gauge cluster.

The MMI system requires a slight learning curve, but once you're familiar it's very easy to use. The configurable gauge cluster screen and the available head-up display are also a boon, allowing you to keep important information within your line of sight when the A7 is in motion.

Safety

Safety
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The 2016 Audi A7 has not been crash tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which isn't unusual for a car in this class.

The A7 comes with an impressive set of standard features, including a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, stability control, anti-lock brakes and a suite of air bags. Audi's Pre-Sense Basic system is included, which provides a warning if a crash risk is present. 

An optional Driver Assistance package brings in automatic high-beam headlights, lane keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, a surround-view camera system and Audi Pre-Sense Plus, which can apply the brakes if an impeding collision is detected.

Cost-Effectiveness

Cost-Effectiveness
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Audi A7 prices start at $68,300 for the base Premium Plus trim. The Prestige model starts at $70,950 and the turbodiesel V6 is a $2,100 option on both trims. S7 and RS 7 models start at $82,900 and $106,500, respectively.

Our 2016 A7 was a Prestige model that included the Cold Weather package ($500), S line sport package ($1,000), a Black Optic package with unique 20-inch wheels ($1,500) and Florett Silver metallic paint ($550). Add in a $925 destination charge and our test A7 has an MSRP of $75,425.

That's less than what you'd pay for the base BMW 640i Gran Coupe or Porsche Panamera, but also slightly more than the Mercedes-Benz CLS400's starting price.

None of these cars are exactly an entry-level purchase, but the A7 deserves recognition for its rich feature set, good fuel economy and standard all-wheel drive. The torquey (and relatively inexpensive) diesel engine option is also well worth your consideration.

Overall

Overall
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Now in its fifth model year, the Audi A7 is certainly no longer a newcomer to the segment. However, Audi continues to tweak the A7 formula with meaningful updates that should attract a number of luxury car buyers. The 2016 A7 also succeeds with style and quality that are unique to the Audi brand. A great driving experience, impressive cargo space and a comprehensive list of standard tech features further bolster the Audi A7's appeal.