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For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Audi Q7 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 Toyota Land Cruiser doesn’t offer pretensioners for the middle seat belts.
Both the Q7 and Land Cruiser have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Q7 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 Land Cruiser’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 Q7 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 Land Cruiser 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.
Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Q7 offers an optional backup collision prevention system that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
A passive infrared night vision system optional on the Q7 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 Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a night vision system.
For better protection of the passenger compartment, the Q7 uses safety cell construction with a three-dimensional high-strength frame that surrounds the passenger compartment. It provides extra impact protection and a sturdy mounting location for door hardware and side impact beams. The Land Cruiser uses a body-on-frame design, which has no frame members above the floor of the vehicle.
Both the Q7 and the Land Cruiser have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, all-wheel drive, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.
For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Q7 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 185 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Land Cruiser has not been tested, yet.
The Q7 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Land Cruiser’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.
The Q7’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Land Cruiser’s (12 vs. 5 years).
On the EPA test cycle the Q7 55 TFSI gets better fuel mileage than the Land Cruiser (17 city/21 hwy vs. 13 city/17 hwy).
On the EPA test cycle the Q7 45 TFSI gets better fuel mileage than the Land Cruiser (19 city/25 hwy vs. 13 city/17 hwy).
Regenerative brakes improve the Q7 55 TFSI’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Q7’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 Land Cruiser doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
For better stopping power the Q7 55 TFSI’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Land Cruiser:
Q7 55 TFSI
The Q7 stops much shorter than the Land Cruiser:
70 to 0 MPH
Car and Driver
60 to 0 MPH
60 to 0 MPH (Wet)
The Q7’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Land Cruiser Heritage Edition’s standard 65 series tires. The Q7 Prestige’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Land Cruiser’s 60 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Q7 has standard 19-inch wheels. Only 18-inch wheels are available on the Land Cruiser. The Q7 Prestige offers optional 22-inch wheels.
Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the Q7 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer run-flat tires.
For superior ride and handling, the Audi Q7 has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Toyota Land Cruiser has a solid rear axle, with a non-independent rear suspension.
The Q7 offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Land Cruiser’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Q7’s wheelbase is 5.7 inches longer than on the Land Cruiser (117.9 inches vs. 112.2 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Q7 is 1.3 inches wider in the front and 2 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Land Cruiser.
The Q7 Prestige handles at .86 G’s, while the Land Cruiser pulls only .74 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.
The Q7 Premium Plus executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.5 seconds quicker than the Land Cruiser (26.4 seconds @ .68 average G’s vs. 28.9 seconds @ .58 average G’s).
For greater off-road capability the Q7 w/Air Suspension has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Land Cruiser (9.7 vs. 8.9 inches), allowing the Q7 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.
The Audi Q7 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 750 to 950 pounds less than the Toyota Land Cruiser.
Unibody construction lowers the Q7’s center of gravity significantly without reducing ground clearance. This contributes to better on the road handling and better off-road performance and stability. In addition, unibody construction makes the chassis stiffer, improving handling and reducing squeaks and rattles. The Land Cruiser uses body-on-frame design instead.
Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the Q7’s third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
The Q7’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The Land Cruiser’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Q7’s liftgate can be opened and closed just by waving your foot, leaving your hands completely free. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its tailgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Toyota. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 17% lower rating, Toyota is ranked 14th.
The Q7 has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Land Cruiser, the Q7 Prestige offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.
The Q7 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 Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The Q7’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Land Cruiser has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
The power windows standard on both the Q7 and the Land Cruiser have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Q7 is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Land Cruiser prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
The Q7’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Land Cruiser’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.
A manual rear sunshade and rear side window sunshades are optional in the Q7 (except Premium) to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a rear or rear side window sunshades.
The Q7’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Land Cruiser’s power mirror controls are on the dash where they are possibly hidden by the steering wheel and are awkward to manipulate.
The Q7 Prestige offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Land Cruiser.
IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Audi Q7 will be $5336 to $12618 less than for the Toyota Land Cruiser.
Consumer Reports® recommends both the Audi Q7 and the Toyota Land Cruiser, based on reliability, safety and performance.
The Q7 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 3 of the last 4 years. The Land Cruiser has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.
The Audi Q7 outsold the Toyota Land Cruiser by almost 10 to one during 2019.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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