Dynamic, highly efficient and extremely comfortable. This is the Audi Q8 concept car, presented for the first time at the North American International Motor Show 2017.
The Audi Q8 combines the spaciousness of an SUV with the sleek design of a coupe with propulsion that is provided by a powerful and efficient plug-in hybrid. This concept car is the basis of what Audi intends to launch on the market in 2018.
With a huge wheelbase (three metres) the Q8 will have plenty of space for passengers and luggage, so even when it’s at maximum capacity this car will feel roomy. Even though the sloping coupe-like roofline makes the car look sporty, the rear passengers will have ample shoulder and head space.
The concept also uses high-end production solutions for its wide-track suspension. The adaptive air suspension sport – an air suspension system with controlled damping – allows a wide range from cushioned cruising to firm and tight handling. It also sets the ground clearance in two levels, with 90mm height difference.
This concept uses large touch screens with an intuitive user interface that works like an extended version of the Audi Virtual Cockpit. When you turn on the car, a swooping visual will start from the Virtual Cockpit and sweep over to each of the touch screens in the car, indicating that they’re all connected.
Even the climate control will be operated from a touch screen. In the reveal trailer, the speed of the fan is changed by pinching outwards and the temperature is changed by swiping from left to right. Opening the car is equally as focussed on touch. If your key is within range, you can press the small Audi logo on the B-pillar and the door will spring open slightly, allowing you to pull the door open.
Three drive modes will be available. ‘EV’ mode will prioritise the electric motor, using up your electric charge before switching to the combustion engine. ‘Hybrid’ will leave the decision over which drive type to use to the hybrid management system. ‘Battery Hold’ will save your battery life for use at a later time.
"The Audi Q8 is an Audi in peak form." Dietmar Voggenreiter, Audi
The octagonal Singleframe grille with honeycomb insert is the defining feature of the front of the car. It is significantly wider than current Audi production models. The outer air inlets have a deep, dynamic appearance and a distinctive aluminium blade forms the bottom edge of the bumper.
The flat, wedge-shaped headlights have an aluminium surrounding that carries on from the Singleframe grille. The lights are laser for both low and high beam, and there is a narrow LED light guide for the dynamic turn signals and daytime running lights.
When in the car, the driver’s wrist rests on the low selector level of the eight-speed tiptronic. The concept car has a 3.0 TFSI engine with a 100kW electric motor. Ultimately, the Audi Q8 concept accelerates from 0-62mph in just 5.4 seconds. Audi expects that the electric motor will allow for 37 miles of travel before switching to the combustion engine for a further 624 miles. This gives the Q8 a total range, when fully charged and topped up with fuel, of 661 miles.
As is expected in a car that Audi describes as “Audi in peak form”, the Q8 will also come with quattro all-wheel drive delivering the power of the hybrid drive to the road with supreme control. The huge wheels have 20″ ceramic brakes allowing the driver to bring the Q8 to a stop effortlessly. It’s also nice to see a concept car without bizarre and futuristic wheel designs.