It seems Audi has made good on their promise by bringing more of their exciting models into their showrooms in the United States. They already threw us a bone with the eagerly anticipated, handsome, and powerful Audi RS6 Avant station wagon – a vehicle that satisfies the needs of husbands looking for a great excuse to get a performance car, with the wife appreciating the extra versatility and room for the kids (while husband snickers in the background). But America loves its SUVs, and while the hulking yet snazzy-looking Q8 fills that need, we could always use more power. That's why the 2020 Audi SQ8 is finally here and starts at $89,000 minus destination, taxes, title, and options.
Gallery: 2020 Audi SQ8 in Tarbes, France
While the announcement of the SQ7 and SQ8 coming to the United States was made public in January of 2019, being a little late to the party means that Audi has graciously upped the power on the already available SQ8 and SQ7, even more than its Euro-spec. Under the hood is a 4.0-liter TFSI twin-turbo V8 engine capable of generating up to 500 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque, enabling it to sprint from 0-60 mph in 4.3 seconds. You also have an eight-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission mated to Audi's quattro all-wheel-drive system with all-wheel steering and a nifty 60% torque split to the rear and 40% to the front. Inside its aggressive coupe-ish SUV exterior is a driver-focused cockpit with the latest digital goodies from Audi together with a panoramic sunroof, four-zone climate control, heated and cooling front seats with massage function, and interior ambient lighting as standard. Bumping up to the $94,500 Prestige version nets you a full-color head-up display and Bang & Olufsen 3D Advanced Sound System.
As with every Audi, there is an exhaustive list of standard and additional equipment that can be had with any of the two trims you choose. Costing a significant $20,800 over an Audi Q8, does the SQ8 tickle your fancy? Or does the $4,200 cheaper SQ7 make more sense?
2020 Audi SQ8 delivers powerful V8 performance and bold road presence
- 2020 Audi SQ8 4.0 TFSI® V8 engine generates up to 500 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque
- Twin-turbo V8 can propel SQ8 from 0-60 mph in 4.3 seconds
- Bold design further accentuated by S model design elements
HERNDON, Va., March 5, 2020 – The 2020 Audi SQ8 offers the perfect balance of SUV functionality and emotional design with exceptional S model performance. The SQ8 carries an all-new engine for the U.S. market, a 4.0-liter TFSI® V8, capable of producing 500 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque. The available Sport Package adds active roll stabilization and a quattro® sport differential, along with red brake calipers, to further enhance driving dynamics.
- New for the U.S. market, the 4.0-liter TFSI® twin-turbo V8 engine is capable of generating up to 500 horsepower and 568 lb-ft of torque, enabling it to sprint from 0-60 mph in 4.3 seconds.
- The twin-turbocharged SUV routes power via an eight-speed Tiptronic® automatic transmission, sending power to all four wheels via Audi’s quattro® all-wheel drive.
- The SQ8 offers available active roll stabilization, using the vehicle’s 48V electrical system to turn into corners more flatly. This allows the SQ8 to have a comfortable ride without compromising spirited driving dynamics.
- Standard all-wheel steering turns the front and rear wheels in the opposite directions to reduce the vehicle’s turning circle and turns them the same direction at highway speeds for enhanced stability.
- The SQ8 is equipped with standard quattro® all-wheel drive, offering high-precision handling through active torque distribution to both axles. In regular driving situations, the quattro® all-wheel-drive system delivers 60 percent of the torque to the rear axle and 40 percent to the front.
- Offered as part of the SQ8 Sport Package, the quattro® sport differential offers a dynamic driving experience and enhances cornering agility by actively splitting torque between each of the rear wheels, with the ability to direct nearly all torque to one wheel.
- Paying homage to the Audi Sport quattro coupe of the 1980s, the design language of the SQ8 is highlighted by pronounced wheel arches and gently inclined C-pillars. The light strip that comprises the rear LED tail light signature is also reminiscent of cues from the original sports coupe.
- The SQ8 exemplifies today’s Audi SUV design language with a muscular octagonal Singleframe® grille, standard LED headlights and frameless doors.
- The SQ8 features a unique rear diffuser with quad exhaust outlets.
- In the U.S., Alu-optic design elements are offered for the first time around the grille as well as the mirror caps, signifying an S model. Standard equipment wheels are 21-inch, 10-V-spoke S-design with all-season tires.
- The available Black-optic Package includes 22-inch Audi Sport 5-V-spoke anthracite wheels with all-season tires, black exterior accents that complement the mirror caps, roof rails and Singleframe® grille.
- The SQ8 comes standard LED headlights with LED taillights and dynamic turn signals or can be equipped with available HD Matrix-design LED headlights with full LED taillights. When equipped with the available HD-Matrix design headlights, fast-moving light animations play in the headlights and taillights when the vehicle is locked and unlocked.
Driver-focused interior, comfort for five
- The dashboard in the SQ8 is angled toward the driver, creating a driver-centric cockpit. The three dimensional architecture around the MMI® touch response system includes an air vent strip that spans the width of the dashboard, underlined by black panel elements and nearly uninterrupted inlays.
- In the dark, the multicolor contour lights trace the design lines of the interior and provides backlight for the quattro badge above the glove compartment.
- The SQ8 features a heated, 3-spoke multifunction steering wheel with the S emblem.
- The SQ8 also comes with perforated, heated and ventilated Valcona leather S sport seats with diamond stitching.
- Available features include extended leather, massaging front seats functions and heated rear seats.
- Available interior leather colors include black, Rotor Gray and Arras Red.
- Aluminum Spectrum interior trim is standard. Also available are Gray Oak high-gloss wood and Carbon Vector interior trims.
- The SQ8 has standard seating for five passengers, with generous space in the rear. Cargo space is further enhanced by sliding, split-folding 40/20/40 rear seatbacks with adjustable recline.
- Four-zone automatic climate control, panoramic sunroof and interior lighting package come as standard equipment.
Displays and infotainment
- Standard second-generation Audi virtual cockpit featuring a 12.3-inch display offers HD resolution of 1920 x 720 pixels. The virtual cockpit helps enhance the infotainment and navigating experience through the large satellite imagery or 3D city maps (requires Audi connect® PRIME subscription) supported with 4G LTE (where available).
- The MMI® touch response system is displayed over two large, high-resolution touch displays (10.1” top, 8.6” bottom) that are used for navigation functions in addition to the lower display’s controls for climate control, comfort and convenience functions and for natural handwriting input with whole-word recognition.
- The SQ8 offers passengers an available Wi-Fi hotspot (requires subscription), natural voice control and an extensive Audi connect® portfolio. With an active Audi connect® subscription, functions such as parking information, weather updates and Yelp® review highlights are now integrated within the MMI® touch response system and can be accessed through their own icons.
- Infotainment features such as internet radio streaming and Amazon Music (subscription required) are also accessible via the MMI® touch response system via the Audi connect® mobile app.
- Standard Audi phone box connects compatible smartphones with the vehicle’s antenna and can charge the phone inductively.
- Standard on Prestige models, the full-color head-up display projects relevant driving information including driver assistance systems information in the driver’s field of vision.
- Standard Audi smartphone interface provides access to wireless Apple CarPlay® and Google™ Android Auto for compatible devices.
- Two sound systems are offered in the SQ8. Standard is a Bang & Olufsen Premium 3D Sound System. Available on Prestige models, the Bang & Olufsen 3D Advanced Sound System delivers nearly true-to-life surround sound through 19 speakers, powered by the 19-channel BeoCore amplifier and ICE power amplifiers with a peak output of 1,820 watts.
Advanced driver assistance systems
- Available Adaptive Cruise Assist (ACA), a “hands-on” system that helps the driver with acceleration and braking, maintaining speed and following distance, and with lane tracking over at speeds up to 95 mph and during traffic jam situations.
- Standard Audi pre sense city helps detect vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists in the vehicle’s forward path, at speeds of up to 52 mph, and can initiate braking if the vehicle detects a potential collision.
- Standard Top view camera system (front, rear and side views) with virtual 360o surround view combines four wide-angle cameras on the outside of the vehicle to project a virtual real-time 3D model of the SQ8, allowing the driver to toggle around the vehicle and zoom in and out to help with maneuvering in tight spaces.
- Available Intersection assist helps monitor cross traffic when pulling through an intersection or crossing lanes and can help notify the driver of a potentially hazardous situation by applying the brakes at speeds of up to 6.2 mph or with visual and audio warnings at speeds of up to 18.6 mph.
- Available turn assist can help notify you of an oncoming vehicle when turning left by applying the brakes and keeping the vehicle within its own lane.
- Available traffic sign recognition, including vehicle speed warning, can help detect speed limits and can display the information in the Audi virtual cockpit, including “Right Turn on Red” signs as well as recommended exit and on-ramp speed limit signs.
- Standard Audi side assist can provide blind spot monitoring via LED indicators on the exterior mirror housings at speeds above 9 mph.
- Standard Audi pre sense rear helps monitor the traffic following behind the vehicle and can close the windows and sunroof and tension the safety belts in the case of a rear-end collision.
- Standard Vehicle exit warning (as part of Audi side assist) can help notify you when moving objects are approaching from behind when the doors are opened with a visual red indication on the LED light strip of the door trim, an acoustic warning and a one- to two-second delay in the door handle release.
- Standard rear cross traffic assist (as part of Audi side assist) can support the driver when reversing out of a perpendicular parking space and can help alert the driver through a brake jolt in certain situations, for example in the case where an approaching vehicle is detected.
Model year 2020 SQ8 starting manufacturer suggested retail prices:
2020 Audi SQ8
*Starting MSRP of $89,000 for a 2020 Audi SQ8 4.0 TFSI quattro® with automatic transmission. Price excludes destination charge ($995), taxes, title, other options and dealer charges. Dealer sets actual price.