Audi’s current flagship crossover offering is the Q7. Unlike most of its rivals, the Q7 offers up to 7-seats and plenty of trunk space. However, it isn’t exactly what we would call sporty, and it falls short when compared to some of its more aggressive-looking rivals. In order to change that it seems a new model will be released in the near future. Earlier this year Audi released the Q8 Concept, a four-door coupe crossover offering up to 5 seats with a coupe-like roof line. The car was clearly inspired by one of their earlier Quattro concepts with its squat stance and very aggressive design. However, it seems this wasn’t just a concept. Not that long ago the production version of the 2018 Audi Q8 has been seen testing on the Nurburgring. The car was heavily camouflaged, but even so, the design cues first seen on the concept were quite clearly visible.
Is It the Same as Its Rivals?
At this point, it seems the Q8 will be nothing like its main competitors, and that is great. The car offers a much more refined look, and it seems it might be better equipped too. Some also suggested that this model could be Audi’s first true high-performance crossover and be considering it will share its platform with the Lamborghini Urus. This statement is likely not far from the truth. Things like a fully adaptive suspension system, carbon ceramic brake rotors as well as a high-performance RS Q8 version will most definitely be offered during its lifespan. This should give Audi one of the best performing crossovers on the market by a big margin.
The 2018 Audi Q8 will likely share most of its engines with the lesser Q7. This means the base model is likely going to boast a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 gas engine despite the fact the concept had a hybrid. This engine should be good for little over 350 horsepower and 360 lb-ft of torque. Even though it may seem down on power, this engine should allow the car to hit 60 MPH in under 5.0 seconds mostly thanks to its lightweight aluminum construction. Further up the range, the car could get one of Porsche’s new gas powertrains. Their 2.9 liter V6 is known to make well over 400 horsepower while the 4.0 liter twin-turbo V8 has been seen to make as much as 550 horsepower.
Either of these would allow the Q8 to shine, especially since both engines are relatively lightweight which would allow the car to drive better than some would expect. As with most other crossovers, the 2018 Audi Q8 will come with their “Quattro” all-wheel drive system. Also, this is likely going to be Audi’s first car to receive an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic which will provide shorter gear-change times than the old ZF 8 speed while also being lighter.
2018 Audi Q8 Price and Release date
|Engine||3.0-liter turbocharged V6 gas|
|Power/torque||350 hp and 360 lb-ft|
|Transmission||eight-speed dual-clutch automatic|
|0-60 mph||8,0 sec|
|Top speed||155 mph|
|RELEASE DATE: First months of 2018|
|PRICE: Starting at $76,950 for based model|
Even though the production model hasn’t been revealed just yet, it seems the car will be mostly identical to the concept showcased a few months ago. In the front, it is clear it boasts Audi’s new large hexagonal grille also seen on their Q2. The headlights are quite slim and swept back while the intakes in the bumper are functional this time around. The back of the car is nothing like the back on its main rival.
Instead, Audi opted for a design closer to that of the Q2. While the roof is certainly slightly raked towards the back, the rear window has a more natural design which makes it seem like a coupe-crossover instead of a sedan on stilts. The wheels seem similar to those found on the high-performance versions of the Q7. In terms of size, the car seems to boast the same wheelbase as the Q7, but it definitely is wider and lower than its sibling.
Inside the Cabin
Considering Audi’s history, it is safe to assume the upcoming 2018 Audi Q8 will get a nearly identical interior to the Q7. However, the materials, as well as the inserts, will likely be unique for the coupe crossover. Expect carbon fiber and aluminum inserts instead of the usual wood. The seats, both those in the front and at the back, are also expected to be different with better side bolsters than on the Q7.