Audi-Q7Maarten Hoffmann reviews the new Audi Q7

Audi have been producing cars under their own banner since 1910 following the company’s purchase of Auto Union from the Daimler-Benz Corporation. The company name is based on that of the Founder, August Horch. Horch means listen in German and becomes audi in Latin. The company is 99.55% owned by the Volkswagen Group, and in 2014 the company sold 1.7 million cars worldwide. Audi is still one of the only manufacturers offering permanent 4-wheel drive across the range and I utterly fail to understand why more haven’t caught onto this fact. My wife drives an Audi A6 Avant and when the great British winter descends upon us and all is white, my car remains in the drive as her’s is the only one that will make it out.

I like Audis, as, like Mercedes and BMW, they have gained a reputation for solid engineering, bullet-proof build quality, reliability and strong resale values. The Q7 was introduced in 2005, followed by the Q5 in 2007 and the Q3 in 2011. As you might know if you read my reviews on a regular basis, l am a great fan of the Q5. It’s the perfect SUV size with a great engine, superbly comfortable and highly manoeuvrable. The Q3 is a good car, but for my tastes a tad too basic and utilitarian, and there is only one car in the range that l have not driven - the big boy of the family, the Q7 – until now.

The first thing that grabs your attention is that this car is vast. It drives like a standard saloon, although at the height of Ben Nevis, but it’s when you come to park it, manoeuvre through tight traffic or get out of it in a car park that you realise that this car is vast....

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