Following the general auto manufacture trend of large sports performance luxury vehicles straying into the marketplace, such as the BMW M6 and a number of Mercedes-Benz AMG models, it was only a matter of time before Audi decided to stretch its portfolio and modify its Sportback A7 model to produce the performance Audi S7.
Fitted with newly developed 4.0-liter TFSI twin-turbo eight cylinder, the S7’s seven-speed S tronic drivetrain puts out an impressive 420 horses, producing a powerful 460 lb.-ft. of torque. This is a noticeable improvement over the 3.0 TFSI eight-speed V6 the standard A7 is driving around with, by about 100 or so horsepower and about 80 pounds of torque. And while you may have a V8 under your feet, Audi’s stellar “cylinder on demand” feature allows the car to drive as a V4 when power needs are at a minimum, for less noise and vibration as well as up to 10 percent mileage improvement per gallon.
On the exterior, everything about the S7/A7 model appears long: the engine hood, wheelbases and low dynamic roof line. This vehicle is built as much for performance as it is for overall presence. While the design suits the five-door look, it’s the small details that really give this sexy coupe some curb appeal, such as the short overhang and aggressive front façade design with dual air intakes, rocker panels, quad-exhaust pipes and the rear spoiler, for increased stability at higher speeds.
When heading out of the city, the standard Quattro all-wheel-drive system will definitely be an asset in more difficult conditions, riding on regular 19” or custom 20” rim packages. With Audi’s usual inclination for top-level lighting packages, the S7 contains the trademark LED treatment for running and taillights, xenon headlamps and standard 15-degree adaptive steering light controls.
The luxury interior is wrapped in Valcona leather with cross-stich patterning; the bucket sports seats are embellished with the S7 logo and the leather-wrapped steering wheel hovers over the standard aluminum shift paddles. Audi’s proprietary MMI Navigation unit boasts an awesome new “Audi Connect” feature. This system—the world’s first factory-installed auto wireless internet hub—allows the vehicle to draw on Google Earth and real-time SiriusXM traffic maps for a more integrated approach to driving and location, including live fuel prices, weather and local news. Fancy a custom drive you’ve designed on Google Maps? Just sign into your account and download the maps straight to the S7’s seven-inch dash screen. With a top speed of 155 mph, we’re pretty sure there are a few sweet spots you’d like to take this beast for a spin. We’d recommend the 318-curve Dragon in N.C., if you can handle it, that is.
The 2013 Audi S7 starts at $78,800. Check out more at www.audiusa.com.