- the sq8 is a new high-performance version of the audi q8 suv that is going on sale in europe this summer, and we think it will come to the united states eventually.
- in europe, the sq8 has a turbo-diesel v-8 engine, but it will offer a gasoline engine in the u.s., likely a turbocharged v-6.
- expect the sq8 to arrive in the u.s. market sometime in 2020, with more information coming later this year.
the q8 currently sits at the top of audi's suv range, and it's now reaching even higher with a new high-performance sq8 variant. set to go on sale in europe this summer as an sq8 tdi model with a powerful turbo-diesel v-8 engine, the sq8 is all but confirmed for the u.s. market as well, but it will have a gasoline engine on our shores.
audi says that it will release information about the gasoline-powered sq8 later, but we suspect that it will have the same turbocharged 2.9-liter v-6 engine in the new audi s6 and s7 models. that engine, which has a 48-volt mild-hybrid setup with an electric supercharger, makes 450 horsepower and 443 lb-ft of torque and pairs with an eight-speed automatic transmission and quattro all-wheel drive. the sq8 tdi's 4.0-liter turbo-diesel v-8 makes 429 horsepower and a whopping 664 lb-ft of torque.
other than its powertrain, the eventual u.s.-bound sq8 will be nearly identical to the european model shown here. different wheels, a few extra vents, a different grille treatment, and quad exhaust tips round on the rather subtle exterior treatment for the s model, which isn't very easily distinguishable from the standard q8. the interior has extra black trim and diamond-stitched leather, with bits of carbon-fiber trim and contrast stitching available as options.
pricewise, expect the sq8 to start a fair amount higher than the standard q8, with a base price somewhere in the $80,000 range. we should hear more information about the u.s.-spec sq8 by the end of this year.