What is it?
The rise of the low-slung, four-door premium coupe has never been totally aligned with either the dictionary (which insists a coupe only has two doors), or practicality. As such, the Audi A7 might seem an unlikely candidate for a plug-in hybrid powertrain. Surely buyers who choose the A7’s swooping style over its far more spacious A6 sibling are unlikely to fret about such practical concepts as efficiency and fuel economy?
And yet, the ever-tightening requirements prompted by tough new legislation has prompted Audi to create this A7 55 TFSIe quattro, which mates a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine to an electric motor powered by a 14.1kWh battery. It’s the same unit featured in the recently launched Q5 55 TFSIe SUV.
The engine and motor combine for 362bhp, with a 0-62mph time of 5.6 secs and a limited top speed of 155.3mph. On the practical side, it allows the A7 to travel a claimed 26 miles on electric-only power, at speeds of up to 84mph.
A lower-powered 50 TFSIe version will follow, but despite the A7’s sporty styling, don’t expect to see the more powerful V6 plug-in hybrid system used in the plug-in hybrid versions of the Q7 and A8 applied here.