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New entry-level Audi A7 Sportback 45 TDI engine arrives

New Audi A7 base unit to be called 45 TDI, and it features fuel-saving mild hybrid tech

The Audi A7 Sportback has just become slightly more attainable thanks to the introduction of a new entry-level diesel engine.

Using Audi’s recent - and still seemingly arbitrary - naming strategy, the new model will be referred to as 45 TDI, sitting below the existing 50 TDI diesel and 55 TFSI petrol variants.

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Essentially, the new model features the same 3.0-litre V6 used by the 50 TDI, but in a lower state of tune. At 228bhp, it makes 52bhp less than the 50, but 13bhp more than the equivalent model in the old A7 Sportback. Maximum torque stands at 500Nm, spread widely across a 1,750rpm to 3,250rpm range. Driven through an eight speed automatic and quattro all-wheel drive, the 45 covers the 0-62mph benchmark in 6.5 seconds and can carry on to a 155mph top speed.

Like the rest of the A7 range, the 45 TDI gets a 48-volt electrical system which allows for a mild hybrid drivetrain. This system lets the engine shut down at speeds between 34mph and 99mph when coasting, and can charge the car’s lithium ion battery through regenerative braking. When coming to a complete stop, the engine can disengage from 13mph to save extra fuel, while a front-facing camera detects when traffic ahead moves away, re-starting the engine in preparation.

The results of these fuel-saving measures mean that despite the performance, the A7 Sportback 45 TDI achieves 50.4mpg in official tests, while CO2 emissions are a wheel size-dependent 147g/km.

Prices start at £52,240 in Sport trim and rise to £55,140 for the S line. Standard equipment includes a set of 19-inch alloy wheels, a twin-touchscreen infotainment system, Audi’s Virtual Cockpit digital instrument display, LED lights front and rear and a rear-view camera. S line models gain 20-inch alloys, firmer suspension and Matrix LED lights which play fancy animations when the car is locked and unlocked.

Read our in-depth Audi A7 Sportback review right here...

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Chief reviewer

Alex joined Auto Express as staff writer in early 2018, helping out with news, drives, features, and the occasional sports report. His current role of Chief reviewer sees him head up our road test team, which gives readers the full lowdown on our comparison tests.

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