- Audi Q8

Audi is one of the many players who have opted to skip next year’s Auto Expo. That said, the German carmaker is all set to begin 2020 with a bang. On January 15, it will launch the Q8 in India. As expected, it will arrive on our shores via the CBU (Completely Built Unit) route. And, like the recently launched A6, the crossover will come with a BS6-compliant petrol engine only.

Which engine precisely? The 3.0-litre V6, which is boosted by a turbocharger. Or, if you like Audi’s nomenclature – the 55 TFSI. The motor puts out 335bhp/500Nm, all of which is harnessed by an 8-speed automatic transmission. To utilise the maximum oomph available, the Q8 will also come with the Quattro all-wheel-drive system. Finally, the engine will come coupled to a 48-volt mild-hybrid system which, in specific scenarios, helps the internal combustion engine with an additional 16bhp.

Performance figures? Well, Audi claims that with the powertrain mentioned above, the Q8 can hit 100kmph from nothing in 5.9 seconds and reach an electronically-limited top speed of 250kmph. You have to agree that those numbers are impressive for something that isn’t exceptionally aerodynamic and weighs nearly 2.1 tonnes unladen.

With an ‘8’ in its nameplate, the upcoming crossover ought to carry the best of gizmos. The standard kit will include ambient lighting, Matrix LED headlamps, four-zone climate control, a 17-speaker, 730W Bang & Olufsen sound system, fully-digital instrument cluster, head-up display, 360-degree cameras and Audi’s MMI Navigation plus. And, the safety and assistance kits will be top-notch too, with features like front and rear parking sensors, adaptive cruise control with swerve and turn assists, and lane change assist. As in the case in all Audi India models, the Q8 is likely to have two trim levels – the entry-level Premium Plus and the range-topping Technology.

In essence, the Q8 is the Q7 as the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupé is to the GLE. Expected price? Well over Rs 1 crore (~$140,000). Apart from it rivalling the GLE Coupé, the Audi Q8 will also lock horns with the soon-to-be-launched Porsche Cayenne Coupé. As for the BMW X6, it is currently not available in India. That, however, is likely to change in the BS6 era.

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