Audi took our complaints about the design of the Audi Q7 wagon crossover SUV thing, did it’s typical sports tune and treatment to it for the first time in the U.S. finally, and now I have a 500-horsepower seven-seater 2020 Audi SQ7 to drive for the day. What do you want to know about it?
(Full Disclosure: Audi kindly dropped off one of the first-ever Audi SQ7s in front of my Brooklyn apartment this morning with a full tank of gas and sanitized interior, in a new pandemic-era method of getting writers to do “first drives” of new models without having to make anybody travel too far. It went pretty smooth and I very much appreciate the caution!)
It’s a little strange that it took this long for America to get the SQ7 performance trim for the Q7 lineup, considering Audi claims it’s their second best-selling model behind the Audi Q5. If you’re selling a lot, you’d think you’d introduce more expensive versions! But we’re there now, so what has Audi done to improve the Q7?
While the standard wagon proudly features an all-new 335 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque 3.0-liter V6 engine, the SQ7 has been graciously gifted with a punchy turbocharged 4.0-liter TFSI V8 making 500 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque. Like many other Audi S models, it comes with the automaker’s 8-speed automatic Tiptronic transmission and the Quattro all-wheel-drive system.
The new SQ7 also comes standard with all-wheel steering to go along with that all-wheel-drive system (and to maybe help some of our previous handling complaints on the regular Q7 we tested), and my particular SQ7 has been optioned with the automaker’s Quattro sport differential.
This website has also previously been harsh on the Q7 for it’s somewhat anonymously-handsome and formulaic-Audi design. But now I’m happy this latest generation gets the fun-for-the-extended-family sporting treatment any three-row SUV deserves—which also happens to make it look better.
It also kept some of the cool quirks of the previous Q7, like how there are still separate taillights when you open the rear hatch so that they can maximize the loading area. What more do you want to know about it?