Electrification, EVs and autonomous cars are the current auto industry buzzwords.
Audi, like many other carmakers, has it’s own EV, too. It’s called the e-tron.
But it looks like the internal combustion engine and diesel fuels are still going to be around.
And they can exist in a BIG way, as shown by the Audi SQ8.
WHAT IS AN SQ8?
Unlike the Q7, which is available with a turbocharged 2-litre 4-cylinder engine, the Q8 only comes with at least six cylinders.
The SQ8 then, is the most powerful Q8 of them all.
HOW POWERFUL IS THIS SQ8?
Under the Audi SQ8’s bonnet is a bi-turbo (or twin-turbocharged, if you prefer) 4-litre V8 turbo-diesel engine.
Said motor is being touted as the most powerful diesel available for a passenger car in the European market.
It kicks out 429hp (435ps) and a mountain-flattening 900Nm of torque from 1250rpm, or basically a hair over idling speed!
WHAT SORT OF PERFORMANCE CAN BUYERS EXPECT?
The important 0-100km/h dash is done in 4.8 seconds. That doesn’t seem so quick, until you realise that the SQ8 weighs over 2 tonnes.
The SQ8 has all-wheel-drive and adaptive air suspension. Rear-wheel-steering and a Sport Differential are also available.
But forget about the big numbers for a moment. The SQ8 also has nifty details for engineering nerds.
TRICKS UP ITS SLEEVE
One such detail is the electrically powered compressor (EPC), which helps the turbochargers spool up when the SQ8 is just starting off or accelerating at low engine speeds.
Another detail you can’t miss is that the SQ8 is actually a mild hybrid that has a 48-volt system.
This 48-volt system enables the engine to perform seamless stop-starts.
And in the case of the Audi SQ8, the SUV can “coast” for up to 40 seconds with the engine switched off to save fuel.
AN SQ8 IN SINGAPORE?
Unlikely, but you never know who might want one. It’s going to be very pricey, too.
Apart from the asking price, which we estimate to be around $400,000 (incl. COE), the road tax is going to be a killer.
The 3956cc turbo-diesel attracts about $5266 in annual road tax. If the same engine was petrol-driven, annual road tax comes to $3882.