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The Audi A7 PHEV Named Best Luxury Plug-in Hybrid of 2021 by U.S. News & World Report

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【Summary】The 2021 A7 55 TFSI e plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) from Volkswagen’s ’s luxury brand Audi has been recognized as the U.S. News & World Report’s Best Luxury Plug-in Hybrid of 2021​. Other vehicles that made the list include the 2021 Chevy Bolt EV, which was crowned the best electric car, and Tesla Model Y as best luxury electric vehicle.

FutureCar Staff    May 04, 2021 3:15 PM PT
The Audi A7 PHEV Named Best Luxury Plug-in Hybrid of 2021 by U.S. News & World Report
2021 A7 Sportback 55 TFSI e plug-in hybrid.

The 2021 A7 55 TFSI e plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) from Volkswagen's 's luxury brand Audi has been recognized as the U.S. News & World Report's Best Luxury Plug-in Hybrid of 2021. U.S. News & World Reports is well known for its comprehensive auto ratings each year. 

The outlet recognized the Audi A7 PHEV for its quick acceleration and impressive responsive steering. Other marks went to the A7's luxury appointed interior and spacious cabin, which luxury brand Audi is known for. 

The 2021 Best Luxury Hybrid and Electric Car winners are based on a combination of each vehicle's overall score from the U.S. News Best Car Rankings, which includes seven categories. The categories include starting price, Level-2 charging rate, fuel economy, as well as range data from the EPA. 

In total, 73 luxury and mainstream hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric cars were ranked and given a score for 2021. Within each of the seven categories, the vehicle with the highest composite score is crowned the winner in that category.

Other vehicles that made the list include the 2021 Chevy Bolt EV, which was crowned the best electric car, and Tesla Model Y as best luxury electric vehicle. The Ford Escape Hybrid was named best traditional hybrid vehicle.

Although much of the auto industry is following Tesla's lead and is focused on building fully-electric vehicles, Audi is still developing PHEVs. 

The A7 plug-in hybrid uses an electric motor positioned between the 2.0-liter Turbo fuel stratified injection (TFSI) engine and transmission. The additional boost from the electric motor delivers a net total system output of 362 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque, allowing for 0-60 mph acceleration in just 5.7 seconds. 

The hybrid A7 features a 14.1 kWh lithium-ion battery which helps provide an EPA-estimated 68 MPGe combined, 29 mpg combined, and an EPA-estimated all-electric range of 24 miles, respectively.

Other features of the car include Audi's renowned quattro all-wheel drive system mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Quattro comes standard on the A7 PHEV.

Audi also included a comprehensive list of advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) safety features including front and rear cameras and an array of sensors to help keep the driver aware of their surroundings at all times.

Other features of the A7 is Audi's virtual cockpit, a fully digital instrument cluster with a 12.3-inch TFT screen. Depending on the model it has a resolution of 1,440 x 540 pixels or a full HD resolution of 1,920 x 720 pixels. It renders graphics which are exceptionally sharp and highly detailed.

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The Audi A7 offers a well appointed interior.

In addition to developing new PHEVs, Audi is also building fully-electric vehicles to compete with Tesla. The automaker's U.S. model lineup will be 30% electrified, including a mix of fully electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, by 2025. Globally, Audi is committed to net CO2 neutrality by 2050. 

According to Audi, the automotive industry is at a turning point and the company believes that it will be spending its full attention and money on electric powertrains moving forward. This includes the company's decision not to produce any new internal combustion engines for its vehicles. Audi will however, continue to make improvements to its existing gas engines to make them more efficient.

By the end of 2021, Audi will release the fully electric Audi e-tron GT sedan and Audi Q4 e-tron SUV, two vehicles that are poised to complete with the Tesla Model S and Model Y crossover.

Another boost for Audi is that the Audi A7 PHEV is eligible for the federal EV tax credit of up to $6,712 and HOV lane usage in several states. The tax credit is not available for buyers of Tesla vehicles since it was phased out after Tesla reached sales of 200,000 EVs, giving Audi a slight advantage in the U.S. market.

The 2021 A7 55 TFSI e plug-in hybrid starts at $74,900 in the U.S., which is $510 more than the Tesla Model S Long Range.

In 2020, Audi sold 186,620 vehicles in the U.S. 

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