The ride comfort of a luxury sedan paired with the sporty handling of a coupe: The chassis of the new Audi A7 Sportback is truly impressive. The suspension control arms are aluminum forgings, which keeps the unsprung masses low. The wheel carriers and pivot bearings are likewise made of aluminum. The anti-roll bars are lightweight tubes.
The front axle, which has a track width of 1,644 mm (64.7 in) is a five-link design that can handle longitudinal and lateral forces separately. Its bearings are sportily stiff in the lateral direction, and supple and soft in the longitudinal direction. A subframe, on which the engine is also supported, serves as the backbone of the front axle. This is rigidly bolted to the front end of the car; due to its high rigidity, steering forces are applied without lag.
The rear axle of the new Audi A7 Sportback (track: 1,635 mm [64.4 in]) observes the track-controlled trapezoidal link principle. This compact design allows for excellent comfort and handling. Both hollow trapezoidal links and the wheel carriers are made of cast aluminum; the transverse links and track rods are aluminum forgings.
The steering box is very compact and features a highly efficient electro-mechanical drive. Thanks to a steering ratio of 15.9:1, steering is sportily direct; power-steering assistance varies precisely in accordance with the vehicle’s speed. The electromechanical power steering combines highly precise feedback from the road with low sensitivity to rough roadways.
This power steering is the foundation for Audi active lane assist and the park assist system. Audi drive select allows the driver to tailor steering from comfortable to sporty.
The new A7 Sportback comes as standard with a sportily balanced steel chassis. Upon request, Audi will supply sport suspension that lowers the vehicle body by ten millimeters (0.4 in) – or the S sport suspension (part of the S line sport package) for a reduction in ride height of 20 millimeters (0.8 in). The package is rounded out by 19-inch wheels fitted with 255/40 tires.
Versatile: adaptive air suspension
Audi offers its adaptive air suspension to customers particularly interested in ride comfort. Featuring electronically controlled damping, this technology raises or lowers the body depending on vehicle speed and the driver’s preference.
Audi drive select allows the driver to switch among three modes: auto, comfort and dynamic. At speeds above 120 km/h (74.6 mph), the adaptive air suspension will lower the body by ten millimeters (0.4 in). On uneven driving surfaces, it can raise the body by 20 millimeters (0.8 in). The air suspension also functions as a self-leveling suspension: it keeps the body at the ideal height regardless of the load situation.
Struts are mounted on the front axle of the new Audi A7 Sportback; pneumatic springs enclose the twin-tube shock absorbers. On the rear axle, pneumatic springs and shock absorbers are separate from one another.
CDC (Continuous Damping Control) shock absorbers ideally complement the pneumatic springs. A control unit adjusts the shock absorbers on a wheel-by-wheel basis within milliseconds. Electromagnetically actuated valves control the flow of hydraulic fluid through the shock-absorber piston.
Standard: the Audi drive select system
The Audi drive select system comes standard on the new Audi A7 Sportback. It allows the driver to adjust the automatic transmission, power steering, engine management and the Audi pre sense basic safety system in various modes: comfort, auto, dynamic, efficiency and individual. There are also optional solutions such as the adaptive air suspension, a climate-control system, adaptive cruise control and the sport differential for engine versions starting at 200 kW (272 hp),
Another system integrated within Audi drive select is dynamic steering. Consisting of a superimposed gear mechanism integrated in the steering column and driven by an electric motor, dynamic steering varies the steering ratio by nearly 100 percent depending on steering-wheel angle, vehicle speed and Audi drive select settings. The entire component is compact, lightweight and very efficient.
With a very direct steering ratio and substantial power assistance, dynamic steering makes it easy to drive the new Audi A7 Sportback in cities. On rural roads, directness and tailored steering assistance provide great agility. At highway speeds, an indirect gear ratio and low power assistance promote calm straight-ahead driving. At the vehicle’s cornering limits, dynamic steering minimizes oversteer and understeer by making subtle adjustments as necessary.
With regard to the brake system in the new Audi A7 Sportback, development engineers focused on low weight and maximum performance. The brake servo is made of aluminum. The ventilated front discs measure 320, 345 or 356 millimeters (12.6, 13.6 or 14.0 in) in diameter, depending on the engine version, and either 300 or 330 millimeters (11.8 in or 13.0 in [ventilated]) at the rear. An electric parking brake is integrated at the rear axle; it also functions as an emergency brake.
In combination with engine configurations up to 200 kW (272 hp), there is an all-new brake system with aluminum fixed calipers at the front wheels. This weighs three kilograms (6.6 lb) less than the previous system.
Electronic Stabilization Control (ESC) has also been enhanced in many regards. The vastly improved torque vectoring, in particular, provides for even more precise cornering. Together with the electromechanical power steering, the system also helps the driver with countersteering and braking on a lane that is slippery on only one side. Activating sport mode will largely deactivate engine intervention and somewhat minimize braking intervention.
Audi and quattro GmbH offer a broad range of alloy wheels for the new A7 Sportback. 11 of the 18 versions are new. Wheels are available in diameters of 18, 19 or 20 inches. 9 J x 21 wheels are the top-of-the-line option. They come in a 5-arm rotor design, in a classic look or matt titanium.
All tires for the new Audi A7 Sportback have been optimized for rolling resistance; some are available in an optional run-flat version. A repair kit and tire pressure loss indicator are standard; an ultra-compact spare wheel is optional. Audi offers 17-inch and 19-inch winter wheels.
The equipment and data specified in this document refer to the model range offered in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted.