Audi has finally taken the wraps off the second-generation A7. As indicated by recent teaser shots, the new sportback is certainly an evolution of the first-generation model that became so notorious, but Audi has thrown in a number of new cues and tech to keep things interesting.
The A7 exterior is nearly somewhat of an icon with its sportback greenhouse, which is highlighted by a dramatic, sweeping roof line. Naturally, Audi has opted to retain the design traits that have contributed to the iconic status, but has converged it with design cues of other new Audi products. As is the case with the new S5 and A8, Audi designers have added more sculpting to the A7 sheet-metal; a look first previewed on the Prologue Concept a few years ago.
Added sculpting is not the only design change intended to bring the A7 into line with the rest of the family. Designers have also added a wrap-around taillight treatment on the famous A7 rump, similar to that of the new A8. It’s obviously becoming ingrained into the Audi design DNA at this point.
Thus far details of the A7 are fairly scarce. What we do know is that the car will offer Audi’s turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 with 340 horsepower. A hotter version is expected in the form of an S7 model, while a twin-turbo V-8 will likely find its way under the hood of the RS7.
As is the case with the new A8, all A7 models will feature a 48-volt electrical architecture, meaning all versions will effectively be mild hybrids. The system should pair well with the new variant of VW’s MLB platform, which is underpinning the A7 with less mass than the outgoing model. The new bones are also enabling Audi to offer rear-steering on the A7.
Audi has also confirmed plans to eventually offer a plug-in hybrid variant of the new A7, but the timeline for that version has not been stated.
Inside, the A7 interior is also borrowing hints from the new A8. Audi’s latest design theme is obvious, with an emphasis on horizontal lines and touch-screen interfaces for nearly every creature comfort. Audi’s impressive Virtual Cockpit system is also in tow with a 12.3-inch LCD display in the gauge cluster.
Audi has also confirmed plans to offer the A7 with level 3 autonomous driving functionality at a later day. That nugget of information suggests the A7 will sport most of the self-driving capabilities found in the new A8 as well.
Thus far there’s no word on pricing for the new A7, or a confirmed on-sale date for the U.S. It’s likely a safe bet the 2019 Audi A7 will arrive late in 2018.