You might be wondering why things like BMW X6 or Mercedes GLE even exist. Their sales figures are just fractions of those achieved by more usually shaped twins from which they were derived, but, there is a catch. As they share almost everything with those regular models, their development is a plain bargain, and they cost as much to produce as their more conventional bases. But, they openly dare to charge more. X6 asks for four to six grand more over X5, while GLE Coupe is more modest and its AMG versions ask around three grand above the ones associated with GLE. So, each one of them sold, simply nets its brand nice pile of cash, keeping whole deal lucrative despite humble sales figures. And Ingolstadt is destined to join them soon with 2019 Audi Q8. Still, that one doesn’t come as partial copy-paste deal, as you will see.
NOT THAT RADICAL
If we want to be honest Audi Q7 is probably in biggest need of more handsome counterpart then Beemer or Merc is. Its cumbersome shape isn’t especially alluring, while more athletically sculptured model might sway some buyers previously turning to more attractive rivals.
Q8 concept revealed this year shows that Audi doesn’t have not even near as radical intentions with roof slope as Munich or Stuttgart currently have, making this rather better looking mid-size SUV compared to existing one, then an actual blend of coupe and crossover. Let’s say something in form of Infiniti QX60 and QX70 relation, and we bet many people will more welcome that approach.
2019 Audi Q8 – KEEPING IT CLOSE
So, the concept looks good and on our delight spy shots depicting test mules reveals that “four rings” marque tries to stick with it. The overall shape is there, and it seems that grille, tail lights, side intakes and even the rear horizontal stretching light bar is too. So, Q8 will arrive as incredibly more sleeker and leaner SUV than Q7, while being completely different looking from it.
The best part is that it manages to visually promise some dynamic satisfaction, without resorting to questionable styling touches also impeding with practicality tendencies. And it gets even better. The concept featured very clean styled and sharp cabin full of screens, while spy shots of production version reveal that almost no deviations were made. Q8 will be as digital as new A8 is, and besides Virtual cockpit and infotainment screen, placed usually occupied by HVAC and other controls will feature another screen joined by a minimal amount of buttons.
MAYBE EVEN RS
Upcoming Q8 will naturally use Q7’s platform, while engine lineups might not completely match. V6 is a certainty, but not current supercharged 3.0-liter from Q7, rather same one with a turbocharger that boosts more power and that will replace older six-cylinder units across the brand’s board. ZF’s 8-speed automatic is also kind of certainty as much as Quattro is, as standard fare of course. Four-cylinder mill from Q7 is not so likely to happen, at least for the US, but the plug-in version is.
The very concept was PHEV vehicle, matching mentioned turbocharged V6 with an electric motor for the total power output of 443 hp. On other side of the spectrum, RS version might be an option too, in which case only twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 capable of 605 hp deem as suitable, though that hp figure might experience some taming in this case. All in all, 2019 Audi Q8 is a promising thing to look for next year, when it could debut as possibly a pretty alternative to “questionable” styled rivals. Expect pricing in the realm of $60k for a start, while RS will break $100k margin surely.
Written by Djordje (George) Mijatov ([email protected])