herald

Saturday 18 August 2018

Magnificent 7

Ian Mallon leaves ‘em green with envy, especially WVM

FOR a people who made a holy show of ourselves when we had money in our pockets, we really do a great job on ‘guilt’ in the current climate.

Ask anybody who’s had the terrible misfortune to drive a brand new sports car through town, and endure the looks and suspicions of all and sundry.

Van drivers, taxi drivers and clampers are the most scornful fellow road users who can do jealous rage like no other.

If you have the audacity to drive something newer than a 2008 Skoda, then heaven help you. And if you’re in something like the Audi A7 then you’d better watch out.

Last week while driving my A7 across town I saw just how far the frustration and jealously of the Dublin motorist would go.

As I lined up at the lights at Newland’s Cross, my old foe ‘White Van Man’ pulled in beside me.

He took one look and as the lights turned green gave me the most enthusiastic of tosser salutes.Now, I’m not normally shockable, but I do object to been given the ‘five-finger-shuffle’ purely on the basis of the car I’m driving.

A couple of years back as I was flying past the second Naas exit in a Mini, a boy racer zipping up the slip road spied me and started giving me the ‘gay wave’ – now I could see his point.

But the Audi A7? Tosser? How very dare you, White Van Man. The A7 is anything but.

It is one of the most beautiful cars I’ve had the pleasure to drive in quite some time, and it is one of the sweetest performers on the road today.

And as a result, the A7 is set to become one of the stunning successes in motoring this year, with Audi expecting to sell 50 models in Dublin alone.

Now that might not seem a lot, but believe you me, more than four dozen €85k sports cars in this day and age is quite an achievement.

And when you see the quality onboard then it’s worth every penny, even in this environment.

The favoured model is the 3.0 litre TDI 242bhp version, which delivers quite a bang.

For such a beast fuel consumption was quite generous, with me packing in almost 600 kilometres before a refill.

Sleek

But perhaps the most eyewatering concept with the A7 is the stunning design, inside and out. A beautiful sweeping, sleek profile gives the most decadent of impressions, and in some ways is comparable to the BMW 5 GT and Mercedes CLS.

Behind the wheel is a stunning affair, thanks to a beautiful walnut finish and slick dials, while the back is impressive too.

While plenty roomy for the kids, adults will find it has enough space to offer a comfy ride for the big uns.

Boot-wise the 7 is shallow but more than doubles in size to 1,360 litres with the back seats folded down .

Out on the road the A7 is a dinger.

It has been constructed on a new platform, which uses a large amount of aluminium to keep the weight down – without losing any of the substance.

All in all the A7 is a thing of absolute beauty, despite what White Van Man thinks.

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