2018 Audi Q8

2018 audi q8 – DOC682402

When BMW introduced the X6 in 2009, a new segment was born. But although the crossover BMW describes as a Sports Activity Coupe proved somewhat popular with SUV enthusiasts, the trend didn’t catch on with other automakers until 2013, when Mercedes-Benz revealed plans to develop a coupe-like crossover based on the M-Class. Shortly after, rumors of a Cayenne Coupe emerged, signaling Germany’s finest automakers to finally pay more attention to this niche. Now, a fourth manufacturer is ready to jump on the coupe crossover wagon. Not surprising, this new player sports Audi’s four-ringed badge on its hood and goes by the name Q8, a moniker the folks over at Ingolstadt trademarked back in 2012.

The news originally came from Audi technical chief Ulrich Hackenberg, who confirmed “the Q8 will come” within the next three years. “It will be something new, following designs established on the Prologue concept. It will be positioned as something more emotional and more sporty than the Q7. The Q7 will be a car for seven people, the Q8 will be more coupe like,” he told .

Although the details are still under wraps as of July 2016, we used some of the hints provided by both Hackenberg and , as well as the first spy shots we received this summer, to paint a (still blurry) picture of the Q8. Read all about it below.

Updated 07/13/2016: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming Q8 out for a first testing session. As you can see, this time they were Q7 based mule, but with wider fenders – a clear indication that the Q8 will have a sportier look than the Q7. The Q8 is expected to be unveiled sometime in 2017.

Spy Shots

July 13, 2016 – Audi Q7 based mule caught testing

Audi Q8

Audi Q8

Audi Q8

Exterior

Essentially developed as a more emotional and sporty version of the Q7, the Q8 will borrow many of its styling cues from the second-generation SUV. Look for the sharper cues, larger front grille, and thin headlamps, but with a coupe-like roof and a slightly revised rear end. Audi will also look for inspiration in the Prologue concept, meaning that the Q8 could also introduce a new design language for the company’s crossovers and SUVs.

New Audi design boss Marc Lichte will be in charge of drawing the Q8, which is said to have an overall length of more than five meters (197 inches). The sporty SUV will ride on Volkswagen ’s second-generation MLB platform, also shared by the Audi Q7, Porsche Cayenne, Volkswagen Touareg, Bentley Bentayga, and the upcoming Lamborghini Urus.

Interior

While the Q7 and Q8 will be quite different as far as design goes, the two are likely to share the same technology on the inside. On the other hand, we expect the Q8 to borrow most of its cabin from the next-generation A8 flagship sedan, which we don’t know much about as of this writing.

Naturally, the Q8’s cabin will be packed with the finest materials we can expect from an automaker such as Audi

Design-wise, it should get the same dashboard as the Q7, which includes the new continuous air vent strip, a cleaner center stack, and digital instrument cluster.

Naturally, the Q8’s cabin will be packed with the finest materials we can expect from an automaker such as Audi. The seats will be wrapped in leather and Alcantara in several color options and complemented by a host of aluminum and wood trims, including Beaufort walnut.

The crossover will also benefit from a new MMI system featuring intelligent suggestions for different tasks, including searching for specific song titles or navigation destinations. As far as entertainment goes, the Q8 will probably come with one or optionally two 10.1-inch tablets as rear seat monitors.

Drivetrain

Audi Q8

Much like the Q7, the Q8 will receive a range of V-6 gasoline and diesel engines. A 2.0-liter four-cylinder is also on the table, but only for certain markets.

In the Q7, the 2.0-liter four-banger cranks out 252 horsepower and 272 pound-feet of torque. Next in line is a 3.0-liter V-6 making 333 ponies and 325 pound-feet of torque, which is the most powerful gasoline unit now that Audi has dropped the 4.2-liter V-8 for the SUV.

Moving over to diesels, the familiar 3.0-liter TDI churns 272 horsepower and 442 pound-feet of torque, while a second version of the turbo-diesel V-6 generates 218 horses and 369 pound-feet of twist.

A Q8 e-tron version is also likely. This model will pair a 3.0-liter TDI and an electric motor built into the eight-speed automatic transmission. The combo develops 373 horses and 516 pound-feet of torque in the Q7 and provides a 34.8-miles of range on electric power only.

Expect these figures to change for the Q8, as most of the drivetrains above will receive an update before the crossover arrives in dealerships.

Prices

Audi has yet to announce a specific timetable for the Q8’s arrival, but word has it the SUV will arrive in time for the 2018 model year. According to , the Q8 will retail from £50,000 in the UK, with the range-topping RS Q8 version priced from around £90,000. These figures convert to $66.200 and $119,000, respectively, as of July 2016.

Competition

BMW X6

BMW X6

The first true coupe-like SUV available on the market received an extensive update for the 2015 model year. Highlights include a narrower front grille, a more aggressive front bumper, and revised taillights and exhaust pipes around back. The crossover is also 20 pounds lighter than its predecessor, a noteworthy improvement given its slightly longer and wider body shell. Under the hood, the second-gen X6 carried on with the same engine choices, including the 3.0-liter inline-six and the 4.4-liter V-8. While the former carried over unchanged, making the same 300 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque, the latter got its output increased from 400 ponies to 445 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque. Pricing starts from $60,600 for the 2016 model year.

Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe

Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe

Launched for the 2016 model year, the GLE Coupe is Mercedes’ answer to the BMW X6. Sporting a similar stance, but with Mercedes -specific cues, the GLE Coupe is available with an array of gasoline and diesel engines. In the U.S., it is sold in its sportiest iteration, namely the GLE 450 AMG 4Matic, which uses a bi-turbo, 3.0-liter, V-6 engine rated at 362 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque. In other markets, Mercedes offers two more engines. A diesel powerplant that cranks out 258 ponies and 457 pound-feet in the base GLE 350d 4Matic model, while the same twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6 mounted in the AMG sport version pumps 333 horses and 354 pound-feet in the GLE 400 4Matic. U.S. pricing starts from $65,100.

Conclusion

Audi Q8

It’s way too early to draw a conclusion, but it’s exciting to see Audi expanding into a new market. The BMW X6 is no longer solo in its segment, and it appears all the major German companies are working on a competitor. With the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe already in showrooms and the Porsche Cayenne Coupe likely already underway, we’re about to witness a new battle of the titans.

LOVE IT

  • Brand-new design language
  • Vast engine options
  • Luxurious interior

LEAVE IT

  • No official details yet
  • Release date unknown
  • Yet another useless, X6-like crossover