2020 Audi Q8 Pros vs Cons. Should You Buy?
The 2020 Audi Q8 is a newcomer in the luxury midsize SUV market. This vehicle is very similar to the Q7, but has lost the third-row in order to provide the second-row and cargo area with more space. Those who do not need seating for six or seven may be enticed by this, as well as the Q8's powerful standard engine and great tech features. It is important to remember that no SUV is perfect, however, and the Audi Q8 is no exception. Ultimately, buyers will need to decide whether or not the pros outweigh the cons.
What's New for 2020?
The Audi Q8 made its grand debut in 2019. As a result, not many changes were deemed necessary for the 2020 model. A more powerful trim level, known as the RS, has been announced with late availability. This version of the 2020 Audi Q8 will feature a larger engine and several other performance enhancing features.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2020 Audi Q8 – The Pros
1. Elegant Interior
It is immediately apparent when sitting down inside the 2020 Audi Q8 that a lot of time and effort went into its design. The materials are sturdy yet sophisticated and the dash is laid out in a very user-friendly manner. Natural wood inlays are found on all trim levels. Going with the top-of-the-line Prestige trim means getting a beautiful leather-wrapped dashboard with contrast stitching. The entry-level model gets tri-zone automatic climate control, with the upper two trims upgrading to four-zone instead. Not only does the interior of the Q8 look great, it is designed to keep everyone happy and comfortable.
2. User-Friendly Tech
Standard on all trim levels are 10.1-inch and 8.6-inch touchscreens. Other included tech features includes Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, and Bluetooth. Drivers also get four USB ports and a ten-speaker audio system. That system can be used to listen to the standard HD and satellite radio. MMI® Navigation and the Audi virtual cockpit, both found in all trim levels, allow for drivers to easily access their infotainment and vehicle settings. This means the tech is not only fun, but it also helps improve safety.
3. Smooth Ride with Agile Handling
At first, buyers may be concerned about how the 2020 Audi Q8 handles due to its size. Luckily, this well-designed vehicle manages to be both smooth and agile. Drivers can feel confident due to how stable the SUV feels and the perfectly-balanced responsiveness of the steering. Adaptive shock absorbers are standard and an adaptive air suspension is available on select trims. The Q8 even feels smooth and composed on the road when equipped with its optional 22-inch wheels, which is something most rivals cannot say.
4. Comfortable and Spacious Seating
Audi went all out when it comes to the seating inside the Q8. Leather upholstery is standard on all trim levels. Front seats are heated with the driver getting eight-way power-adjustment and the passenger getting four-way power-adjustment. There is also a memory feature for the driver's seat, something that can greatly simplify life when more than one person regularly drives the Q8. Going with the Premium Plus or Prestige trim level means getting ventilation for the front seats, perforated leather upholstery, and even more power-adjustment options.
5. New RS Model
Buyers who are a fan of Audi SUVs but crave a little more exhilaration from their drive should be very excited about the RS. Audi calls it a "luxury performance SUV." Underneath the hood of this model is a twin-turbo V8 engine that will produce a staggering 600-horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque. This model will also feature an upgraded air suspension. Drivers who are not satisfied by these already mind-blowing numbers can add the Dynamic Package Plus to their 2020 Audi Q8 RS. This adds carbon-ceramic brakes and a sport rear differential. It also adds Audi's new electromechanical active roll stabilization system, which allows drivers to fly around turns. With this package, the max speed of the RS is 190mph instead of 155mph.
6. High Safety Scores
Safety was also a priority for the engineers at Audi when designing the Q8. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has named it a Top Safety Pick in 2020. It has also received five out of five stars in crash testing conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Standard on all trim levels are important driver aids such as rain-sensing windshield wipers, automatic high beams, forward collision warning featuring brake assist, and lane-departure warning. Available features include adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, traffic sign recognition, and a blind spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert.
7. Powerful Engine with Hybrid System
Although not as powerful as the RS trim, most versions of the 2020 Audi Q8 have more than enough horsepower and torque to satisfy. The standard engine is a V6 that will produce 355-horsepower and is paired with a smooth 8-speed automatic transmission. There is also a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. This works similarly to an alternator and is responsible for running the engine stop/start feature that is included in every Q8. All models also have the highly popular and sophisticated Quattro all-wheel drive system.
8. Well-Equipped Entry-Level Trim
Deciding to stick with the entry-level Premium trim level of the 2020 Audi Q8 will not disappoint. On top of all the tech and safety features already touched on, this trim comes equipped with a panoramic sunroof, push-button start, a power-liftgate, and keyless entry and ignition. For not much more, a tow package can be added to this trim level. With this package, the Audi Q8 can tow up to 7,700 pounds. A cold weather package can also be added at the Premium trim level, which will give it a heated steering wheel and heated backseat.
9. Available Night Vision Camera System
Exclusive to the top-of-the-line Prestige trim is a night vision assist feature. It is designed to help drivers see both pedestrians and large animals sooner, hopefully allowing them to prevent a collision. Located in the front of the Q8 Prestige is a thermal imaging camera. A heated nozzle helps to keep this camera clean in all weather conditions. At night, this setup displays a black-and-white image on the central display of the vehicle.
10. Sleek Exterior Look
The 2020 Audi Q8 can definitely be called a show-stopper. All trim levels have Audi's Singleframe® grille and feature a body-colored mask. Full LED headlights and taillights are standard across the board as well. The side mirrors are heated and have LED turn signals integrated into them. Aluminum-optic roof rails and a tailgate roof spoiler help to round out the look, making the Q8 look like the sporty yet sophisticated vehicle that it really is.
Reasons Not to Buy a 2020 Audi Q8 – The Cons
1. Less Cargo Space Than Competitors
Admittedly, there is nothing really wrong with the cargo space for the Q8. However, drivers who consider this to be a priority should be aware that there are competitors that offer much more space. With the rear seat up, buyers will find 30.5 cubic feet. Folding it down lets them gain access to 60.7 cubic feet. Again, these are not bad numbers, but consumers can get bigger if they desire.
2. Not Terribly Fuel Efficient
When buyers hear that the Q8 has a mild-hybrid system, they may start getting excited about its fuel economy. Unfortunately, the reality is that the Q8's numbers are lower than many competitors. Drivers can expect to get only 17mpg in the city and 21mpg on the highway.
3. Less Practical for Some than the Q7
The shape and size of the Audi Q8 is very similar to that of the Q7. The difference is the seating. While the Q7 has a third-row, the Q8 only has two and seating for up to five. Larger families or those who occasionally drive the carpool may find the Q7 to be more practical.
How It Stacks Up to the Competition:
The 2020 Audi Q8 is so powerful and luxurious that it can be compared to the Porsche Cayenne. Buyers should keep in mind that the ride in the Q8 is much more enjoyable than that in the Cayenne. Plus, anyone who thinks the price of the Q8 is too high will not enjoy finding out how much the Porsche costs. Another potential option would be the BMW X3 M. It has a more powerful engine, but the flip side is the fuel economy is worse than the Q8's. In fact, the X3 M is only estimated to get 14mpg in the city. Many consumers are going to be willing to sacrifice a little horsepower in order to boost efficiency.
ConclusionIt is hard not to fall in love with the 2020 Audi Q8. Its powerful engine and long list of standard equipment make it the ideal vehicle for many different types of buyers. It may not be the most fuel-efficient vehicle on the road, but it more than makes up for that with its fun handling as well as standard and available driver aids. Any consumer looking for a luxury two-row midsize sedan will want to be sure to test drive the new Q8.
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