2019 Dodge Durango vs. 2019 Audi Q7

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Durango has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Q7 doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Both the Durango and the Q7 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, front and rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Dodge Durango is safer than the Audi Q7:

 

Durango

Q7

 

Driver

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Compression

26 lbs.

37 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Chest Compression

.7 inches

.7 inches

Neck Injury Risk

24%

44%

Neck Stress

85 lbs.

118 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Dodge Durango is safer than the Audi Q7:

 

Durango

Q7

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

28

187

Abdominal Force

112 G’s

128 G’s

Hip Force

150 lbs.

350 lbs.

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

25

337

Spine Acceleration

33 G’s

62 G’s

Hip Force

542 lbs.

888 lbs.

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

129

290

Spine Acceleration

39 G’s

40 G’s

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

Dodge’s powertrain warranty covers the Durango 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Audi covers the Q7. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the Q7 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 8 times as many Dodge dealers as there are Audi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Durango’s warranty.

Reliability

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Durango has a standard 160-amp alternator. The Q7’s standard 120-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Durango has a standard 850-amp battery (700 V8). The Q7’s 380-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Dodge vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Dodge 19th in initial quality. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 25th.

Engine

The Durango has more powerful engines than the Q7:

 

Horsepower

Torque

Durango 3.6 DOHC V6

293 HP

260 lbs.-ft.

Durango Dual Exhaust 3.6 DOHC V6

295 HP

260 lbs.-ft.

Durango 5.7 V8

360 HP

390 lbs.-ft.

Q7 45 TFSI 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

248 HP

273 lbs.-ft.

Q7 55 TFSI 3.0 supercharged V6

329 HP

325 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Durango V8’s fuel efficiency. The Q7 doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Dodge Durango uses regular unleaded gasoline (mid-grade octane recommended with the 5.7 V8 engine for maximum performance). The Q7 requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 5 to 40 cents more per gallon.

The Durango has 2.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Q7 (24.6 vs. 22.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping

The Durango stops shorter than the Q7:

 

Durango

Q7

 

60 to 0 MPH

120 feet

121 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Durango has larger tires than the Q7 (265/60R18 vs. 255/55R19).

The Durango offers an optional full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the Q7, it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed. Some models of the Q7 don’t even offer run-flats.

Suspension and Handling

The Durango offers an optional automatic rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The Q7 doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Durango’s wheelbase is 1.9 inches longer than on the Q7 (119.8 inches vs. 117.9 inches).

The Durango’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (50% to 50%) than the Q7’s (55% to 45%). This gives the Durango more stable handling and braking.

Chassis

As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the Durango GT 4x4 is quieter than the Q7 Prestige (38 vs. 43 dB).

Passenger Space

The Durango has 1.5 inches more front headroom, 1 inch more rear headroom, 1.9 inches more third row headroom, 4.3 inches more third row legroom and 1 inch more third row shoulder room than the Q7.

Cargo Capacity

The Durango’s cargo area provides more volume than the Q7.

 

Durango

Q7

Behind Third Seat

17.2 cubic feet

14.8 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

43.3 cubic feet

37.5 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

85.1 cubic feet

71.6 cubic feet

The Durango’s cargo area is larger than the Q7’s in almost every dimension:

 

Durango

Q7

Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)

20”/50”/83”

19.5”/44.7”/80.7”

Max Width

49”

52.5”

Min Width

42.5”

42.6”

Height

36”

30”

Towing

The Durango’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Q7’s (6200 vs. 4400 pounds).

Ergonomics

The Durango’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Q7 does not have an oil pressure gauge.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Durango has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Q7 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The Durango (except SXT) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Q7 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Model Availability

The Durango is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Q7 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Durango is less expensive to operate than the Q7 because it costs $162 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Durango than the Q7, including $76 less for a water pump, $443 less for a muffler, $44 less for front brake pads, $531 less for a starter, $520 less for fuel injection, $302 less for front struts and $479 less for a timing belt/chain.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Dodge Durango will be $16172 to $17484 less than for the Audi Q7.

Recommendations

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Durango second among midsize SUVs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Q7 isn’t in the top three.

The Dodge Durango outsold the Audi Q7 by 76% during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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