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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi A7 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Dodge Charger doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.
The A7’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Charger doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
Both the A7 and Charger have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The A7 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Charger’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
The A7 has a standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Charger doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the A7. But it costs extra on the Charger.
A passive infrared night vision system optional on the A7 Prestige helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The Charger doesn’t offer a night vision system.
The A7 Premium Plus/Prestige has a standard Top and Corner View Cameras to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Charger only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.
Both the A7 and the Charger have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
The A7 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Charger’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.
The A7’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the Charger’s (12/unlimited vs. 5/60,000).
For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the A7 has an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of some of the engines in the Charger.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 25 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 23rd.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 14 places higher in reliability than Dodge.
The A7’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid produces 43 more horsepower (335 vs. 292) and 109 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 260) than the Charger’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6. The A7’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid produces 35 more horsepower (335 vs. 300) and 105 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 264) than the Charger’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6.
On the EPA test cycle the A7 gets better fuel mileage than the Charger AWD (22 city/29 hwy vs. 18 city/27 hwy).
Regenerative brakes improve the A7’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Charger doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the A7’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Charger doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Audi A7 uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The Charger R/T Scat Pack/Daytona 392 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.
In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Audi A7 higher (5 out of 10) than the Dodge Charger (3). This means the A7 produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Charger every 15,000 miles.
The A7 offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The Charger doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.
For better stopping power the A7’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the Charger:
The A7’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Charger SXT are solid, not vented.
For better traction, the A7 has larger standard tires than the Charger (245/45R19 vs. 215/65R17).
The A7’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Charger SXT’s standard 65 series tires. The A7 Prestige’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Charger’s optional 40 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the A7 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Charger SXT. The A7 Prestige’s optional 21-inch wheels are larger than the 20-inch wheels on the Charger R/T.
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the A7 is 1.6 inches wider in the front and 1 inch wider in the rear than the average track on the Charger.
For better maneuverability, the A7’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the Charger’s (36.4 feet vs. 37.7 feet). The A7’s turning circle is 2.3 feet tighter than the Charger AWD’s (36.4 feet vs. 38.7 feet).
The design of the Audi A7 amounts to more than styling. The A7 has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .28 Cd. That is lower than the Charger (.304 to .335) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the A7 get better fuel mileage.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the A7’s rear seats recline. The Charger’s rear seats don’t recline.
The A7 has a much larger trunk than the Charger (24.9 vs. 16.5 cubic feet).
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the A7’s power liftgate can be opened or closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Charger doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening trunk.
The A7’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Charger’s (3500 vs. 1000 pounds).
While the Charger 392 Hemi is not recommended to tow, any A7 can tow a minimum of 3500 pounds.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Dodge. J.D. Power ranks Audi third in service department satisfaction. With a 90% lower rating, Dodge is ranked 30th.
The A7’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. An easy entry system costs extra on the Charger.
The A7 Prestige has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Charger doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The A7’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Charger’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.
The A7’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Charger’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.
In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The A7 Premium Plus/Prestige has standard headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Charger doesn’t offer headlight washers.
To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the A7 Premium Plus/Prestige has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Charger doesn’t offer cornering lights.
A power rear sunshade is optional in the A7 to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Charger doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.
The A7’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Dodge charges extra for heated mirrors on the Charger.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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