Audi A7 Snow and Winter Driving (Solved & Explained)

The Audi A7 is an elegant and advanced full-size luxury sportback, celebrated for its harmonious blend of agile performance, comfort, and cutting-edge technology.

If you’re pondering one for your next vehicle, its performance in snowy and winter conditions is a key consideration.

This article delves into the snow driving capabilities of the Audi A7.

Here is a brief answer to whether the Audi A7 is suitable for snow and winter driving:

The Audi A7 demonstrates impressive winter capabilities with its Quattro AWD system, ABS, traction, and stability control. Audi Drive Select offers adaptable modes for diverse conditions. However, as a sportback, its effectiveness in deep snow may be somewhat constrained due to its moderate ground clearance.

Is the Audi A7 Good in the Snow?

The Audi A7 is a notable option for winter driving. This can be attributed to various features and design aspects specific to the A7, especially the Quattro AWD, ABS, and Audi Drive Select.

However, while the A7 performs well in light to moderate snow, its capabilities in deeper snow may be limited due to its ground clearance.

The ground clearance of the Audi A7 typically ranges from about 4.2 inches (107 mm) to 4.8 inches (122 mm), depending on the specific model and year.

The clearance is adequate for many winter scenarios, but in heavy snow, a vehicle with higher ground clearance might be preferable.

The Audi A7 comes with the celebrated Quattro all-wheel-drive system, enhancing traction and stability in snowy conditions. The system distributes power across all four wheels, adapting to slippery or uneven surfaces.

The A7 also features advanced systems like Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), traction control, and electronic stability control, crucial for maintaining control on icy or snowy roads.

Audi Drive Select in the A7 allows drivers to modify the vehicle’s dynamics for different conditions. In snowy conditions, the ‘Comfort’ mode softens throttle response and transmission shifts, reducing wheel spin risk.

Awarded the IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus, this model stands out for its top-tier safety standards and features. Its excellence in demanding crash tests and sophisticated safety technologies solidify its position as one of the most secure vehicles in its segment.

What Do Owners Say?

Owners praise the Audi A7’s handling in snow, especially when equipped with winter tires like Blizzaks or Nokian Hakka 5s, but advise clearing snow from the vehicle for visibility and highlight the importance of tire choice for optimal performance.

“We had our first snow of the year. Had to take the A7 out and test it today. It handled the snow like it was nothing. Audi Excellence for sure! My car has Blizzaks on 20’s.” –

“Unless you clear all the snow off the roof and rear window before you drive off it collects in a wide V shape on the rear window. It blocks all of your vision out of the window. The rear window defroster will clear it but it takes a while to clear.” –

“If you get more than 1-2″ of snow the entire winter total, get a full winter tire. I always had good luck with Nokian Hakka 5’s, I’m sure there is a newer model, as I bought those on my a6 quite a few yrs ago. Tires make all the difference in traction – do not go with the all seasons that are winter approved(unless you only have that 1-2″ of snow normally). With the Hakka 5’s on, I dug thru every storm on unplowed roads in northern Vermont with them in the winter of ’08 And we had a major storm that winter on every holiday it seemed. I had snow coming over the hood, and I was still digging thru it.” –

“Seattle today had a small snow storm. So far I am happy with the Conti tires that I have. Braking is average though. ABS kicking in too early and the distance is long. But so far so good.” –

“My first snow in the A7. The quattro handled beautifully! What a tank.” –

“With a good set of winter tires, you’ll blow through the snow without any trouble. I took an A7 up to blue mountain after the first snow fall in December in 2016. There was easily 15cm of snow and the car managed without any trouble. The car was also loaded up with a bunch of ski gear and 4 adults, so it wasn’t riding high. Quattro works like a dream in combination with winter tires. The key is the winter tires though, performance rubber won’t cut it in subzero temperatures.” –

What Features Improve Winter Driving?

Quattro All-Wheel-Drive

Equipped with Quattro AWD, the Audi A7 significantly enhances winter driving capabilities. This system, standard in newer A7 models, contributes to its robust performance in snow.

Features of the Quattro AWD system include power distribution across all four wheels, responsive dynamics, stability enhancement, adaptive functionality, improved handling, and safety benefits.

Electronic Stability Program (ESP)

The A7’s ESP increases safety on snowy roads by autonomously managing braking and engine power to prevent skidding.

Heated Front Seats

Standard heated front seats in the A7 provide comfort during cold weather.

Three-zone Automatic Climate Control with Digital Rear Display

The A7’s climate control system allows individual temperature settings, ensuring comfort during winter.

Audi Drive Select

Audi Drive Select in the A7 offers various modes, including ‘Comfort’ for snowy conditions, adjusting car settings for stable driving.

Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS)

The A7’s ABS prevents brakes from locking, vital for winter driving.

Full LED Headlights & Highbeam Assist

LED headlights and high-beam assist in the A7 enhance visibility and safety in winter.

Heat-Insulating Glass for Side and Rear Windows

Heat-insulating glass in the A7 reduces heat loss, maintaining a comfortable interior in cold weather.

Audi Pre Sense Basic

In winter conditions, enhanced safety features like Pre Sense are crucial for providing an extra layer of protection during more frequent and unpredictable driving scenarios.

Where necessary, actions are taken to help protect the driver and passengers if a potential collision is detected. These include:

  • Safety belt tightening for front seats 
  • Closing the front & rear side windows
  • Closing the sunroof

Power-Adjustable, Heated Exterior Side Mirrors

Heated side mirrors in the A7 ensure clear visibility in winter.

Dynamic Suspension

Dynamic suspension in Audis enhances stability and handling in snow by providing firmer control and responsive maneuvering, crucial for safely navigating slippery and uneven winter roads. This system adapts to challenging conditions, ensuring a balanced and secure driving experience.

40/20/40 Split Folding Rear Seatback with Folding Center Armrest

The 40/20/40 split folding rear seatback with a folding center armrest in an Audi offers versatile cargo and passenger space configurations, essential for accommodating winter gear like skis or snowboards while still allowing passenger seating.

High-Beam Assist

High-beam assist improves visibility in snow by automatically adjusting the headlights for optimal illumination and safety in varying winter weather conditions.

Audi connect® CARE assistance and security services (limited time subscription)

Audi connect® CARE assistance and security services provide vital support and aid in winter, offering features like roadside assistance and emergency call functions, enhancing safety and peace of mind in challenging winter conditions.

Does The Audi A7 Have a Snow Mode?

While the A7 doesn’t have a dedicated snow mode, its ‘Comfort’ setting within the Audi Drive Select system effectively serves as an alternative for snowy conditions.

This mode adjusts the vehicle’s suspension, throttle response, and transmission behavior to enhance stability and smoothness on slippery roads. These adjustments are crucial for reducing wheel spin and improving control, making it easier to navigate safely through winter landscapes.

Can You Install Additional Snow Gear on The Audi A7?

The A7 accommodates various snow gear upgrades, including:

  • Snow Tires: Recommended for optimal grip and control in snowy conditions.
  • Studded Tires: Provide additional traction on ice, but usage may be regulated in certain regions.
  • Snow Socks: Lightweight and easily installable for a temporary traction boost on tires.
  • Snow Chains: Offer extra grip in deep snow or icy conditions, with usage guided by the vehicle’s manual and local regulations.
  • Winter Wiper Blades: Specially designed to prevent snow and ice buildup, ensuring clear visibility.
  • Roof Racks and Cargo Boxes: Expand storage capacity for winter sports gear or additional luggage.
  • Block Heater: Keeps the engine warm, aiding in easier starts in extremely cold temperatures.

How Much Snow Can an A7 Handle?

The A7, with around 4.5 inches of ground clearance, handles light to moderate snowfall well. In deeper snow, extra caution and possibly additional snow gear are advisable.

How Do A7 Handle Low Winter Temperatures?

The A7, designed for cold weather performance, includes a turbocharged engine and sophisticated heating technologies. In extreme cold, an engine block heater assists in smoother startups.

Can an Audi A7 Drive on Ice?

With appropriate tires, the A7 handles icy conditions effectively, but caution is key. Features like traction control and Quattro AWD enhance stability and control on ice. When driving on ice be sure to:

  • Drive slowly and smoothly.
  • Avoid sudden braking or acceleration.
  • Keep a safe distance from other vehicles.
  • Use lower gears to maintain traction.
  • Steer gently to avoid skidding.
  • Be cautious on bridges and shaded areas.
  • Keep headlights on for visibility.

Does the A7 Have 4WD?

The A7 primarily offers AWD, differing from traditional 4WD, with older models standardizing front-wheel drive. The Quattro AWD system adapts to

Do Audi A7s Need Snow Tires?

For optimal winter safety and handling, snow or winter tires are recommended for the A7. Here’s a selection of some reputable choices:

  • Michelin X-Ice Xi3
  • Bridgestone Blizzak WS90
  • Nokian Hakkapeliitta R3
  • Continental VikingContact 7
  • Pirelli Winter Sottozero 3
  • Goodyear Ultra Grip Ice WRT
  • Dunlop Winter Maxx WM02

Can You Mount a Snow Plow on an A7?

Mounting a snow plow on an A7 is not recommended due to its design and potential impacts on performance and warranty.

What Essential Items Should I Carry in My Audi?

  • Spade
  • Ice scraper
  • Initial aid box
  • Batteries and a rechargeable power pack
  • Hand warmers
  • High-protein, non-perishable sustenance (e.g., energy bars)
  • Thick cardigan and sweatpants
  • Face mask and gloves
  • Extended thermal undergarments
  • Road signal flare
  • Crisis thermal sheet



  • Ian Sawyer

    Growing up with a father who was a mechanic I had an appreciation for cars and motorcycles from an early age. I shared my first bike with my brother that had little more than a 40cc engine but it opened up a world of excitement for me, I was hooked. As I grew older I progressed onto bigger bikes and...