Land Rover Discovery vs Audi Q7
- Published On: 15 November 2017
- 6 min read
Two big, seven-seater SUVs - Audi’s Q7 and Land Rover’s Discovery – go head to head.
Seeing two full-sized petrol-powered SUVs take on each other is a rare occurrence. The petrol-powered models have always been desired by enthusiasts, but their diesel counterparts have always seen larger sales numbers. However, things are now changing, there is an increase in demand for petrol models. Almost all big SUVs makers like Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Jeep and BMW have now started offering petrol-powered SUVs. The most recent models are the Discovery from Land Rover and the Q7 from Audi.
What Are They?
Audi’s new confusing badging means that the Q7 being tested is - badged as a 40 TFSI - using a 2-litre, four-cylinder, petrol motor that makes 252hp. These figures sound appealing until you hear the figures of the Discovery. The Land Rover is powered by a 3-litre, V6 engine that is supercharged, making an impressive 340hp. Interestingly, the Q7’s 0-100kph time is 0.3sec faster than that of the Discovery. But, things start to change once you cross 120kph, this is where the Q7 loses out to the Land Rover.
The supercharged V6 motor in the Discovery delivers a better experience the longer you put your foot down. This engine has a sharp mid-range with a punchy delivery of power up to the redline. The motor also makes a good noise while it heads towards its redline. Audi’s Q7 doesn’t sound half as great. It has a buzzy noise with uneven power delivery when one would step on the pedal for an overtake. When driven hard, the engine feels stressed and feels like it is being pushed to its limit. The Q7 does deserve credit because it manages to keep up with the Land Rover in terms of performance, even though it is significantly underpowered in comparison. Furthermore, the Q7 manages to be considerably more refined with lesser wind noise.
How do They Drive?
Performance wise, both SUVs use air suspension and electric power steering, however they are very different performers. In the Q7, passengers sit lower, and it delivers a more car-like feel. Additionally, it feels lighter on its feet and quicker to change direction. If Audi had dialled in a bit more weight into the steering, it would have been considerably more rewarding to drive though. The steering’s light feel makes it easy to use in the city.
Users sit much higher in the Land Rover which, in turn, results to great visibility. However, the Discovery feels large and difficult to manoeuvre around town. When compared to the Q7, the Discovery rides a bit firmer. Where the Discovery does perform is on open roads, it is rock-solid on open roads. The steering feel is also not as light as the Q7.
On the Outside
The exterior of the Q7 looks simplistic and well-designed, typical of Audis. The Discovery on the other hand, is rugged and looks designed for off-road adventures. They are both on different ends in terms of design, and fans of bigger bodied SUVs are likely to opt for Discovery. For buyers looking for a taller car, the Discovery will be the way to go. Users looking for urban styling will opt for the Q7. The Land Rover, with its stepped roof, straight D-pillar and large long rear overhang, looks the way it does for a reason.
On the Inside
The third row on the Land Rover is an optional extra for ₹1.1 lakh however; it is properly usable for adults with lots of room. The best seats in the Discovery are the front two; they are finished well and have foldable armrests. Almost all of the interior bits in the Discovery look tough and unbreakable. The dashboard is a bit basic in design but goes with the Discovery’s no-nonsense theme. The touchscreen display in Land Rover is slick and speedy.
The Q7 is considerably different on the inside; the dash in the Audi is modern and has a neat instrument cluster which is easy to use. The Q7 has good front seats and better middle-row seats than the Discovery. However, the Audi loses out majorly in the third row. The room at the back is tight and difficult for two adults to sit in comfortably.
Interestingly, the Discovery can be optioned with more features – dual sunroofs, rear screens and heated/cooled front and middle-row seats. But, one can get more equipment as standard on the Audi.
Which One Should I Buy?
The new Audi Q7 has been the people’s favourite in diesel spec, but it doesn’t perform as well in its petrol avatar. The four-cylinder petrol motor lacks the grunt of the diesel and performance is sufficient in town but will leave you wanting more. The Land Rover, on the other hand, does the does the job a bit better. Its supercharged V6 engine and proper off-road capability makes it the SUV of choice. However, it is costlier to buy and run because of its thirsty engine. All said, it’s the Land Rover Discovery Si6 that’s the winner in this comparison.