Options takes the Audi A7 Sportback 2.0 TFSI quattro S tronic for a spin

Sometimes you can predict the sort of car a colleague drives. The car they own often speaks volumes about the sort of person they are — young and fun-loving, sporty and image-conscious, boring and dull.

So, when I first set eyes on the new Audi A7 Sportback, I quickly started imagining the sort of person who would drive one. It was clear to me, given its elegant shape, styling and Audi badge that this car would be ideal for an established C-suite executive. Someone who is senior in their company and has been for a while.

Audis are not really driven by aspirational types who want to show off that they have moved up to the highest rungs on the corporate ladder. BMW, Mercedes-Benz or maybe a Maserati would tick their boxes.

Instead, Audis tend to be driven by those who enjoy understated wealth and no longer need to flaunt their status. And given the price of the new A7 Sportback, they’d need plenty of cash in the bank too. Sadly, I can’t put myself in this bracket, but at least I got to imagine owning one during a 48-hour media test drive.

The Audi A7 Sportback 2.0 TFSI quattro S tronic — to give the new model its full name — has a bigger three-litre sibling. So, this smaller-engined version is clearly for a mature driver who has put their boy-racer days behind them as it’s less powerful.

But do not underestimate what you can get out of the turbocharged two-litre engine nearly packed under the bonnet. You will be very surprised at just how fast it is, particularly its pick-up from a standing start. The stats may say 6.2 seconds to get to 100kph, but it feels faster in practice. But rather than racing off, this is a car for effortless cruising along the expressway and that is what I spent most of my time doing. While Singapore’s executives may be pining for business class flights again, this is the closest thing on four wheels. It’s an elegant machine inside and out and perfect for any kind of executive, young or old. The exterior design does a great job of masking how big and long this coupe is. Sportback actually refers to the shape of the car’s rear which slopes long and beautifully down to its back bumper.

Audi actually says the shape of the car is a combination of three different body concepts — coupe, sedan and Avant. By this it means the car features the design of a coupe, the spaciousness of a sedan and the variability of an Avant, which is the name Audi uses for its sporty estate cars. Whatever fusion is going on here, the A7 Sportback is undeniably a handsome looking car. It screams “executive” when you look at it, but it also looks like it goes fast too. This Audi Quattro car gives you all the advantages of front-wheel drive, while its all-wheel functionality is always lurking in the background and will kick in when needed.

Not only does it rank highly in the speed stakes for a car of its size, but it’s big on comfort too. The model I testdrove sat on chunky 20-inch Audi Sport wheels and the adaptive suspension smoothed out every bump and ridge in the road. Not only is the ride among the most comfortable you will experience, but the interior is also pretty comfy too, and includes a lot of modern touches.

These days a luxury car needs to be brimming with new technology and the A7 does not let you down. The cockpit is ultra-modern and features not one but three screens: There is the main 12.3- inch Active Cockpit instrument panel, a 10.1-inch touchscreen infotainment system and also an 8.6-inch lower panel that controls comfort functions. The onboard camera system is also very state-of-the-art creating a 3D image of the car. Plus, the sensor-controlled rear hatch opens and closes automatically in response to a foot motion.

As you would expect, it is very spacious inside — including a big boot that can be increased to 1,390 litres when the rear seats are folded down. Everywhere you look you can see quality materials, and even everywhere you can’t see. The A7 Sportback is made with a steel and aluminium composite construction which helps create excellent body stiffness and aerodynamics. It really is a quality-built car.

Another plus-point are its green credentials as it has a mild hybrid engine system, with a 12V battery on board. This is designed to help boost fuel efficiency rather than offering an electric boost. It helps bring down fuel consumption to a very respectful 7.3 litres per 100km. 

Audi A7 Sportback 2.0 TFSI quattro S tronic

$316,700 including COE

Engine: 1984cc, inline-four, turbocharged

Power/torque: 245hp/370Nm

Fuel consumption: 7.3L/100km

0 to 100kph km/h: 6.2 seconds

Top speed: 250kph