By Drew Johnson
Thursday, Oct 31st, 2013 @ 9:05 am
Nearly a decade after being first introduced, the second generation version of Audi's seven-seat crossover will be unveiled at next fall's Paris Motor Show, a new report indicates.

Auto Express says that the Q7 will be formally unveiled next September in Paris before hitting the market shortly thereafter. That will mark the end of a particularly long run for the current Q7, which went into production in 2006 and was lightly refreshed for the 2010 model year.

Our spy photographers nabbed the first images of Audi's next-generation Q7 crossover SUV back in August.

The 2015 Audi Q7 will make use of Volkswagen's MLB modular architecture, resulting in a smaller footprint and a much lighter curb weight. In fact, insiders say the next Q7 will shed up to 800 pounds, resulting in much improved economy.

Audi is planning to launch at least two new crossovers in the coming years, which will allow the German automaker to reposition the Q7. A smaller, long-rumored Q6 SUV could help the Q7 move upscale in terms of luxury appointments, while a new flagship Q8 due out around 2017 will push the next-generation Q7 down in overall size.

On the styling front, the Q7 should adopt a more conservative design derived from the Q3 compact crossover. LED headlamps like those seen on the Audi A8 will be part of the package.

Both gas and diesel powertrains are expected, with the 2015 Q7 likely to make use of Audi's upcoming ten-speed dual-clutch transmission. The ten-speed unit will eventually be offered in a number of other Audi-badged vehicles.