The gorgeous 2019 Audi Q8 has a deal-breaking flaw – TechCrunch

Rate this post


The 2019 Audi Q8 is the form of the long run. It’s stunning because it efficiently merges the look of a sports activities sedan with the form of an SUV. It has flowing traces, crisp angles and simply the correct look on and off the street. Inside, it’s comfy, although a bit smaller than the title suggests. And underneath the hood, Audi paired a succesful V6 engine with a 48-volt battery, making a mild-hybrid setup that supposedly helps with gas economic system.

But after spending loads of time within the Q8, I discovered it backwards. Most crossovers present the consolation of a sedan with the utility of an SUV. This one has the tough consolation of an SUV with the restricted utility of a sedan. Worse but, driving the Q8 round city generally is a irritating expertise.

I spent a few weeks within the new Q8 on a street journey from Detroit by way of Canada to New York Metropolis. I took it over the countryside, round hilly passes and thru 4 of the 5 boroughs. My children spilled Cheetos within the again. I lived on this automobile for hundreds of miles. This expertise is totally different from most car opinions. Most automobile opinions are penned after just a few hundred miles within the automobile, which might typically result in milquetoast conclusions. Not this time.

I don’t just like the Q8. The dangerous outweighs the great. The stunted driving traits smash the in any other case attractive car.


The sedan is bleeding out, and the crossover is holding the knife. Shoppers are overwhelmingly selecting these quasi-SUVs over sedans or sport utility automobiles. There’s an excellent cause, too. Crossovers typically present the supple journey high quality of a sedan with the utility of an SUV. I’m sorry to report the Q8 does the alternative. It has the tough journey of an SUV and the restricted utility of a sedan.

The Q8 has a puzzling powertrain. It doesn’t wish to go ahead. A number of instances all through my time with the Q8 I almost acquired into an accident due to the timing of the transmission. It typically left me hanging in the course of the street whereas it took its time to translate the engine’s directions to the tires. I used to be honked at continuously whereas in NYC.

A turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 rests underneath the hood, and Audi says it’s good for 335 HP and 369 pound-foot of torque. The Q8 is just not underpowered, and it sports activities a model of ZF’s ubiquitous 8-speed transmission. The Audi Q8 is among the first inner combustion automobiles to be paired with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. That is stated to assist enhance gas economic system by relegating acceleration to a mild-hybrid setup, and this might show to be the reason for my frustration.

Whoever’s responsible, in actual life, the transmission feels prefer it doesn’t use the primary and second gear. There’s a second or two hesitation between the time the pedal is engaged till the automobile decides to maneuver ahead. As soon as underway, the Q8 is a stunning expressway cruiser with loads of energy to overhaul meandering sedans. At pace, it’s comfy and assured. At a standstill, it’s hesitant and irritating.

I’m not alone on this frustration. Automobile and Driver says the Q8 “felt hesitant round city until we crushed the fuel pedal.” Motor1 says, “At instances [the transmission is] clunky, notably when accelerating…” MotorTrend said, “We famous, nevertheless, a longish delay within the supply of torque after you give it some beans.”

Audi constructed the Q8 as a multipurpose utility car and outfitted it with a number of driving modes, together with Dynamic, which lowers the car and supposedly modifications the transmission response. Choose Off Street or All Street, and the Q8 raises just a few inches, offering higher floor clearance. That is helpful on Michigan roads, the place post-winter potholes are the dimensions of bathtubs.

These driving modes give the Q8 added utility and foreshadow a future the place automobiles higher adapt to their driver’s wants. Audi has provided related options for years, however to not this excessive. The Sport mode drops the Q8 to the bottom whereas the Off Street mode raises the Q8 to a degree the place it may deal with severe terrain.

Sadly, the adjustable modes didn’t deal with the lackluster powertrain. Even in Sport mode, the Q8’s transmission was sluggish.

Not less than the Q8 is comfy.

The inside of the Q8 is beautiful and options Audi’s new dual-touchscreen infotainment middle. I find it irresistible. Audi lengthy had the most effective consumer interface within the trade. This one is completely totally different and even higher.

There are two touchscreens in the course of the Q8. The one on the highest handles media, mapping and car settings. The one on the underside is for local weather management. Each function incredible haptic suggestions. Hit a button on the display, and a slight vibration makes it really feel such as you touched an actual button.

To me, this twin display setup is a greater answer than an enormous display like Tesla or Ram makes use of of their automobiles. In Audi’s answer, each are tilted to supply quick access, and there’s much less of a studying curve. The setup follows the overall button placement present in automobiles for the previous few a long time. Local weather is at all times on and at all times on the underside. The radio and mapping display is on the highest and will be turned off to scale back distractions.

A display lives behind the steering wheel, too, and sports activities the same format to Audi’s present system. The driving force can simply swap between info screens with the speedo and tach on both aspect. Hit a button on the steering wheel and the gauges scale back in dimension whereas the map will increase. It’s a helpful function.

The Q8’s seats are incredible and almost make up for the lackluster driving capabilities. They’re agency but forgiving, with infinite changes. The seats, with their built-in massagers, made the boring Ohio turnpike a bearable expertise.

The Q8’s inside house is just not as ample as I anticipated, and I feel it has to do with the naming scheme. The Q8 joins the small Q5 and seven-seater Q7 in Audi’s lineup. The title suggests the Q8 is bigger than the Q7 in the identical method that the Audi sedan A8 is bigger than the A7. But it surely’s not. The Q8 is a five-passenger car with much less cargo room obtainable than the Q7.

I used to be capable of get three suitcases and a few backpacks within the again. The dearth of cupboard space is obvious all through the cabin. The middle console is just two smartphone’s deep. There isn’t a spot for sun shades. Two adults may sit within the backseat, however I’d battle for the entrance.

Once more, the Q8 is comfy, and a pleasant dimension, however the title suggests a bigger car.

Prefer it or not, the Q8 is the form of the long run. Its sheet metallic conveys a way of on or off-road sportiness. The Q8 is designed across the driver, too, and the Q8 may very well be a incredible bundle. It appears stunning inside and outside; I really like the form and type of the Q8. It’s gorgeous and cozy to take a seat in. I don’t like how the Q8 drives.


Supply hyperlink