Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Audi A7 Sportback 3.0 TDI Quattro Black Edition

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Audi A7 Sportback 3.0 TDI Quattro Black Edition

Article excerpt

Byline: Enda Mullen

AUDI'S ever-expanding range was augmented by a couple of hatchbacks a few years back, with the aim of giving saloon buyers the chance to plump for something just a little bit different.

The A5 and A7 Sportbacks have proved popular, though the smaller A5 is a more familiar sight on British roads.

They're both sleek and sportylooking vehicles, the A7 more so due to its larger dimensions.

Although to my mind it still seems like a pretty new model, the A7 had a mid-life makeover this year with revised engines, refreshed styling, some new technological features and simplified new trim levels.

Black Edition is the new top-ofthe-range trim option with S line and SE Executive sitting below it.

A rival to the Mercedes-Benz CLS, the A7 isn't a cheap car and certainly sits in the executive bracket, with an entry-level model costing PS45,875.

That model features a 3.0-litre diesel engine and there are also two more powerful 3.0-litre diesels. Power ranges from 215bhp to 315bhp.

The entry-level lowest-powered diesel offers much when it comes to delivering reasonable running costs. Known as the ultra, it emits just 122g/km of CO2 and manages to return 60.1mpg on the combined cycle. Pretty impressive for a car that is still pretty potent and has a top speed of 149mph and a 0-62mph sprint time of 7.3 seconds.

So just how much better is a twin-turbo 315bhp Black Edition model? An additional PS13,000-odd outlay will get you a car that goes faster and offers four-wheel-drive, as well as plenty of extras in terms of technology and creature comforts.

It tops out at 155mph and will take you from 0-62mph in an impressively swift 5.2 seconds.

In truth this has to be one of the swiftest, smoothest and refined diesel cars I've yet driven. You could also be forgiven for having to open the filler cap just to check it is actually a diesel, largely as the noise it makes is very un-diesel-like.

I'd imagine Audi's engineers spent quite some time working on an engine note that is music to the ears and would probably satisfy even the most fussy petrol purist.

It ensures this diesel really is great fun to drive and its four-wheel-drive capability offers added reassurance. …

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