Audi Q8 & SQ8 facelift debut with laser high beam, OLED rear lights – RSQ8 coming soon

Realise it or not, It has been five years since Audi first launched its Audi Q8. And the luxury carmaker thought it was time to give its flagship SUV a facelift update. Like in the past, the Audi Q8 is offered in its base model form and the performance-oriented SQ8.

The facelifted Audi Q8 comes with high-intensity LED headlights, which are included with a laser light as an additional high beam, along with LED daytime running lights. Customers can also opt for the optional matrix LED setup.

Round the back, the facelifted Audi Q8 is the first Q8 ever to come with organic light emitting diode (OLED) rear lights, matching the Audi A8 and Q5. The OLED rear lights also incorporate a proximity indication feature that works in tandem with the assistance systems.

How this system works is when vehicles from behind come within two meters of the Q8, the control units trigger the activation of all the digital OLED segments to make the luxury SUV more visible. Additionally, both the headlights and rear lights also come with four digital light signatures.

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First debuted on the Q8 e-tron, the facelifted Q8 and SQ8 bear the brand’s new modern corporate identity, together with the new black and white two-dimensional rings. The luxury SUV’s octagon Audi Singleframe grille is also now bigger, which is said to set it apart from the brand’s A models. Its B-pillars also get the model, derivative, and technology identifier, letting people know which Audi model you’re driving.

To make the Q8 facelift look sportier, Audi has included newly designed tailpipes across the Q8 range. On top of this, both the S Line model and the SQ8 get side intakes in the front bumper as well. Three new colours have been introduced with the Audi Q8 facelift, namely Chili Red, Ascari Blue, and Sakhir Gold, along with five alloy wheel designs ranging from 21 to 23 inches.

Powering the Audi Q8 55 TFSI in Europe is a 3.0-litre 6-cylinder Otto-cycle engine. This mill makes 340 hp (metric) and 500 Nm, enabling it to perform the century sprint in 5.6 seconds and achieve an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h.

There is also the Audi Q8 45 TDI featuring a 3.0-litre six-cylinder diesel engine that makes 231 hp (metric) and 500 Nm. One step above, the Q8 50 TDI makes slightly more power at 286 hp (metric) and 600 Nm.

The performance-oriented Audi SQ8 on the other hand gets a 4.0-litre V8 petrol engine that churns out 500 hp and 770 Nm, enabling it to go from a standtil to 100 km/h in just 4.1 seconds and achieve an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h. To save fuel when under normal driving, the engine can run on its four cylinders only.

And like its regular siblings, the Audi SQ8’s engine sends power to all four wheels via the brand’s Quattro permanent all-wheel drive (AWD) system and is paired to an 8-speed Triptron ic gearbox. The SQ8’s gearbox does shift faster though.

Available with a choice of 21, 22 or 23-inch wheels, the Audi SQ8 gets S-badged brakes measuring 400 mm up front and 350 mm at the back. The brake callipers can also be coloured in either black or red.

Suspension-wise, the facelifted Audi Q8 features electronically controlled air suspension with a continuously adaptive damping system. The SQ8 even comes with adaptive air suspension sport as standard.

The performance-oriented Audi SQ8 also gets all-wheel steering as standard for increased level of safety and comfort. At low speeds, the back wheels turn up to five degrees in the opposite direction to the front wheels. This essentially reduces the car’s turning radius by up to one meter.

Inside, the base model Audi Q8 comes with leather seats, along with nine decorative inlays to choose from. The luxury SUV’s interior can be finished in either fine grain ash, carbon twill, or aluminium linear silver grey.

The Audi virtual cockpit can also display safety information and warnings. This includes lane change warning (LCW), distance warning for other road users, interaction assist, and traffic light information. With the Audi Q8 facelift, customers can now utilise popular apps from third-party providers using the car’s central display, such as YouTube, Spotify, and Amazon Music.

Customers in Europe can now purchase the facelifted Audi Q8, with a starting price of EUR86,700 (approx. RM434,919). As for those who are waiting for the even more powerful Audi RS Q8, it is currently in the making and will be coming soon.

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