THE NEW AUDI Q8 IS HERE TO CRASH THE LUX­URY SUV PARTY

YOU KNOW WHOI FEEL BAD FOR? THE LUX­URY SUV SHOP­PER “NO WORD YET ON HOW THIS THING AC­TU­ALLY DRIVES.”

Sharp Magazine Middle East (English) - - Auto - BY ALEX NINO GHECIU

TThe New Audi Q8 Is Here to Crash the Lux­ury SUV Party

You know who I feel bad for? The lux­ury SUV shop­per. The mar­ket is lousy with well-de­signed, up­scale sub­ur­ban peo­ple movers. With ev­ery aspi­ra­tional au­tomaker — from Rolls-royce to Lam­borgh­ini to Bent­ley — of­fer­ing up their own ver­sion, it’s easy to feel over­whelmed. Es­sen­tially, it’s how Marge and Homer felt that time they vis­ited Spring­field’s mas­sive new su­per­mar­ket, Mon­stro­mart, “where shop­ping is a baf­fling or­deal.”

Well, pre­pare for things to get more baf­fling. To­day Audi un­veiled the 2019 Audi Q8, the au­tomaker’s new flag­ship SUV. The brand says it com­bines the “el­e­gance of a four-door lux­ury coupe with the prac­ti­cal ver­sa­til­ity of a large SUV.” On the lux­ury SUV totem pole, it’s cer­tainly up there.

The two-row Q8 is wider, shorter, and lower than Audi’s Q7, which it’s based on. This gives the ve­hi­cle much sportier pro­por­tions — check the sharp an­gle on that rear win­dow, and that big, mean “sin­gle­frame” grille dom­i­nat­ing its front end. Audi’s call­ing this grille “the new face of the Q fam­ily.” It’s a face you can get used to see­ing ev­ery morn­ing.

Audi prom­ises the Q8 of­fers a roomier in­te­rior than “most” its com­pe­ti­tion. With the seat­backs folded you get a gen­er­ous 62 cu­bic feet of cargo space, more than enough room for all your white­wa­ter raft­ing gear (if that’s your thing). In­side there’s also MMI touch re­sponse, Audi’s lat­est in­fo­tain­ment in­ter­face (as seen in the new­est A8 sedans) and a pretty pimpin’ Bang & Olufsen 3D sound sys­tem.

Un­der the Q8’s hood is a 340 hp, 3.0-liter V6 en­gine. That’s more pow­er­ful than the Q7’s 3.0-liter, thanks to a 48V “mild hy­brid” sys­tem that’ll be fit­ted to all Q8 mod­els. It comes with Qu­at­tro all-wheel drive as stan­dard.

Audi hasn’t given any other pro­duc­tion pow­er­train specifics, so no word yet on how this thing ac­tu­ally drives. Un­til we can get be­hind the wheel of one and tell you, you’ll just have to set­tle for drool­ing over th­ese ar­rest­ing pho­tos. Poor you.

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