Audi has put out a car to fill just about every niche there is, and very successfully too, over the last few years. But it has rarely been an innovator, preferring to see how the water is before jumping in. The Audi Q7 and the Audi Q5 are good examples of this – late to the party but going to the top of the tree in no time.
One of the most successful high-end niches of late was created by Mercedes with the CLS, a great looking 4 door, 4 seat coupe, which is arguably the best looking car Mercedes make. It has spawned a raft of copy-cat styles from car makers like VW, Aston Martin and Porsche. And, as ever, Audi is coming up quickly from behind.
We’ve know about the A7 concept for a while, but ahead of the Detroit unveiling comes real pictures and much more detail.
The A7 Concept is unmistakeably an Audi, with a refined version of the trademark nose and incorporating Audi’s new LED headlight technology. The roofline is very swoopy, and the rear is quite un-Audi like, but works.
It appears that the A7 is built on Audi’s modular longitudinal build kit (LBK), a clever system (AM uses something similar) which allows easy changes in dimensions without starting from scratch.
The A7 seems to be bigger than the A6 (which is what we had expected it to be based on) and is probably closer to the A8 in size. It is also believed that the LBK will be used for the next generation A8, so that would make sense.
There should be more detail on the A7 in the next few days as Audi officially shows the world the car. More details then.
Update 12/1/09: The official reveal has happened, and there’s not much more detail than we gave you yesterday. There are more pictures in the gallery below now, including interior shots. As always, they look just like every other Audi interior on concepts of late (I think they kept the teak from the Q7 V12 Concept to use here!), but the real world interior will be more prosaic.
Audi is making big play of this A7 Concept as the ‘Sportback Concept’, which seems odd. An old moniker (already used on the A3 and expected on the A5 soon – even Mitsubishi has a ‘Fastback’) it doesn’t seem to fit with the idea of the A7 as a prestigious, stand-alone model.
Unless of course Audi isn’t going to use the A7 name, and goes for this as the A8 Sportback.