Audi presented a concept at the 2017 Detroit auto show earlier this year, and now, the prototypes of the Q8 have been caught on camera. The Q8 will be a new range-topping SUV which will go on sale at the end of 2018. It is expected to hit the US market in early 2019 as a 2020 model.
Based on the spy shots, we can conclude that the prototype has the similar size to the Q7, which means that this is not the smaller e-tron electric SUV, that is also going to be revealed in 2018, but none of the test mules have been seen yet.
Since the Audi Q8 and Q7 are similar in size, both vehicles are based on the same version of the Volkswagen Group’s MLB platform. The FWD system will be standard, whereas the production of the new model will take place in a Bratislava factory, Slovakia. The Q8 will come with a sporty design while its key competitors will be the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe, Land Rover Range Rover Sport, and the BMW X6.
Furthermore, we can clearly see the prominent front grille which slightly differs from the one on the other Audi SUVs. There is a teardrop motif to the headlights, and we are not sure whether the new Audi Q8 will stand out in the crowd because these changes are subtle.
The US-spec model will be equipped with a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 engine good for 354 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque, and it will be combined with an eight-speed automatic transmission that sends power to all four wheels. As we go up the ladder, we come to the e-tron plug-in hybrid which will use a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 powerplant in combination with an electric motor for a complete output of 442 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque.
In case you are looking for a more potent car, you might opt for an SQ8 or even an RS Q8. The first model will probably have a diesel engine in the European market, but not in the US. As for the RS Q8, if it is even launched, expect it to feature the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 unit that also powers the RS7 Performance and S8 Plus.
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