Driven - - Audi A7 Sport­back 55 Tfsi -

boot space at 535 litres in stan­dard guise man­ages to cram in any­thing this side of a kitchen sink and then some. Of course, you can fur­ther in­crease the ca­pac­ity to 1,390 litres by fold­ing the rear seats down, which is par­tic­u­larly cav­ernous should you re­quire ex­tra space to cart cum­ber­some items.

MO­TI­VA­TION

Beat­ing un­der our A7 Sport­back’s bon­net is the 3.0-litre V6 that pushes out 250 kW and 500 Nm through a dual-clutch au­to­matic gear­box and quattro all-wheel drive. With such a smooth de­meanour, I was pleas­antly sur­prised by the depth of us­abil­ity in this ap­pli­ca­tion as op­posed to the Q8 we drove a while back. A plea­sure on the open road, we nosed the ve­hi­cle to­wards Polok­wane one early morn­ing to at­tend a fam­ily fu­neral and it was here that the A7’s crown jewel truly sparkled.

The afore­men­tioned air sus­pen­sion of­fered one of the smoothest ride qual­i­ties I’ve ex­pe­ri­enced yet in a ve­hi­cle in this seg­ment. It sim­ply wafts in a man­ner be­fit­ting a high-end lux­ury sa­loon, soak­ing up road im­per­fec­tions with the great­est aplomb all the while keep­ing the body con­trol level enough to elim­i­nate any would-be nau­se­at­ing mo­tions.

The en­gine proved to be a thrifty sip­per, re­turn­ing a com­mend­able 7.4-litres per 100km on that trip, while ur­ban ex­ploits saw us hov­er­ing at the 10-litres per 100 km mark, which is still re­spectable for this ca­pac­ity en­gine.

Thanks also to the dy­namic all-wheel-steer (R33,050), which sees the rear wheels turn in the di­rec­tion of the front wheels at low speeds, and op­po­site at higher speeds, the A7 is ex­cep­tion­ally easy to ma­noeu­vre in tight park­ing spa­ces. The 360-de­gree cam­era also en­sures a clear vis­ual of your sur­round­ings while park­ing – with the HD rear park­ing cam­era a notable fea­ture.

LAST WORD

Hav­ing been a fan of the first gen­er­a­tion A7 Sport­back, you can imag­ine, how I would have high ex­pec­ta­tions of the lat­est model. And to my pleas­ant sur­prise, the new model de­liv­ered on all fronts and then some. It man­ages to meld coupe styling, sedan lev­els of com­fort and prac­ti­cal­ity with very lit­tle draw­backs. Yes, the BMW 8 Se­ries Gran Coupe is a wor­thy competitor, but it seems to lean more to­wards the sporty side of the spec­trum, which is great if you are into that sort of thing. For me, how­ever, the A7 Sport­back is de­cid­edly ahead of the pack and my choice ad­vo­cate in the seg­ment.

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