Hi-tech meets high end with the elegant new Audi A7 Sportback – complete with remote parking

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Looking for a luxury, high end car stuffed full of hi-tech features? Just launched in Ingolstadt, Germany, the latest Audi A7 features nearly 40 autonomous driving facilities plus new touch screen displays and optional voice control.

Central to the system are two displays: a 10.1inch upper display and 8.6inch lower display. Both of these are touch screen, replacing the rotary push buttons and the conventional buttons and controls of the previous models.

While the driver controls the MMI (Multimedia Interface) infotainment system from the upper display, the 8.6inch lower display provides access to the climate control system, comfort functions and text input.

Audi offers an optional head-up display that projects important information onto the windscreen. MMI Navigation plus, the highest level infotainment system, also includes the fully digital Audi virtual cockpit with its rendered dials and 12.3 inch display.

An optional extra with the new A7 Sportback is voice recognition. With MMI navigation plus, the natural speech dialogue system processes questions and commands in two ways – with information stored onboard as well as information from the cloud.

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The top MMI navigation plus package will also be available with a choice of two sound system upgrades, including a Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound System with 3D sound.

Remote parking pilot

But that’s not all. Using the AI button, the driver will be able to activate the Audi AI remote parking pilot and the Audi AI remote garage pilot, both of which will be made available during 2018. They will autonomously manoeuvre the A7 Sportback into and out of a parking space or garage.

The driver can even get out of the car before launching the function using the myAudi app on their smartphone. To monitor the manoeuvre, the driver simply presses and holds the Audi AI button throughout. The central driver assistance controller (zFAS) merges the data from a sophisticated set of sensors to continually compute an image of the surroundings.

Depending on the equipment level, there can be as many as five radar sensors, five cameras, 12 ultrasonic sensors and a laser scanner.

In addition to the Audi AI systems, the new A7 Sportback features a total of 39 driver assistance systems to make daily use easier for the driver.

They are split into three packages: the Audi AI parking package (gradual introduction beginning in 2018), the City assist package with the new crossing assist, and the Tour assist package.

The latter includes an efficiency assistant, which helps to encourage a driving style for reducing fuel consumption, and the adaptive driving assistant (ADA), which supplements the adaptive cruise control (ACC) with helpful steering interventions to keep the car in its marked lane.

Of course, all this tech doesn’t come cheap. The new Audi A7 Sportback will be available to order in the UK from early 2018 with pricing for the first phase of models starting from approximately £56,000.

Chris Price