2023 Audi Q8

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2023 Audi Q8 Review: Sensibly Sporty

It would be unfair to bill the new 2023 Audi Q8 coupe SUV as a Q7 in a party hat, but this is very much the case. Riding on the VW Group MLB Evo platform, it and the Q7 share their genes with their Porsche Cayenne, Bentley Bentayga, and Lamborghini Urus corporate cousins. While the Q7's chassis tuning is more sensible than a sporty corner carver, the Q8 is a sportier coupe-SUV variant designed to rival the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe with more aggressive looks and sportier handling traits. While S and RS variants bring the real firepower, in base form, the Q8's performance is not at the top of the class despite a 335-horsepower gas V6 with 369 lb-ft of torque, an eight-speed automatic transmission, and a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. The Q8 counters by being a more practical car than the average rival, with more rear-seat headroom and a generous trunk.

Read in this review:

  • Exterior Design 10 /10
  • Performance 8 /10
  • Fuel Economy 7 /10
  • Interior & Cargo 8 /10
  • Infotainment & Features 9 /10
  • Reliability 8 /10
  • Safety 10 /10
  • Value For Money 8 /10
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2023 Audi Q8 Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2022 Q8?

The new 2023 Audi Q8 SUV sees several upgrades in the USA. All Q8 trims get HD Matrix-design LED headlights, headlight washers, and a coming/leaving home animation function for both the head- and taillights. The interior is upgraded with stitched leatherette on the dashboard on all trims, while the Premium Plus also gets it on the center console and armrests. The Prestige trim gains Remote Park Assist Plus.

Three metallic colors are discontinued and replaced by three new ones: Satellite Silver replaces Florett Silver, Waitomo Blue replaces Galaxy Blue, and Tamarind Brown replaces Barrel Brown.

When applied to the Q8 Premium, the Convenience package now includes adaptive cruise control with lane guidance. New to the Executive package available on the Premium Plus trim is dual-pane glass to reduce interior noise levels.

Pros and Cons

  • Superior space for rear passengers
  • Top-class cabin materials and assembly quality
  • Good trunk space
  • High level of standard equipment
  • Good ride/handling balance
  • Not the sportiest handler, considering its looks
  • Slow throttle response in default driving mode
  • Uncompetitive fuel economy
  • More expensive than more practical Q7

What's the Price of the 2023 Audi Q8?

The 2023 Audi Q8 is available in three trims, which means three prices. The base model starts with an MSRP of $72,800. This price does not include tax, registration, or a destination fee of $1,195. Stepping up to the mid-range Premium Plus will cost you $77,300. Finally, the Prestige trim goes for $83,100. Fully loaded, the Prestige will set you back over $100k. If the cost of a new Audi Q8 seems too high, you won't have any trouble finding a good used model for sale, and the 2022 Q8 is starting to look very attractive on the secondhand market.

Best Deals on 2023 Audi Q8

2023 Audi Q8 Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
Premium 55 TFSI quattro
3.0L Turbo V6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
Prestige 55 TFSI quattro
3.0L Turbo V6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
Premium Plus 55 TFSI quattro
3.0L Turbo V6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
See All 2023 Audi Q8 Trims and Specs

2023 Audi Q8 Handling And Driving Impressions

We like the Q7 for its sound ride/handling balance and these talents translate to the 2023 Q8. However, in the coupe-SUV class, more is expected, and it's mildly disappointing that the Q8 feels much like a Q7 to drive. An X6 or GLE Coupe feels more dynamically talented, as does a Cayenne Coupe. The Prestige, with its standard air suspension, delivers an absorbent ride with excellent handling, even on big wheels. Adding rear-axle steering (Prestige only) adds that final sporty dimension the normal Q8 lacks. Neither the air suspension nor the rear-axle steering is available on the other trims. Ride quality on the standard suspension can feel a bit brittle on poor surfaces, but the Q8 hangs on gamely around corners, lapsing into mild understeer near the (high) limits. Somewhat of an irritation is the dull throttle response and hesitance in the economy-minded default driving mode around town, but this can be remedied by switching to Sport. Performance is good but not the best in class, with 0-60 mph dispatched in 5.6 seconds. With exactly the same 335 hp, an X6 is faster and more economical.

Verdict: Is The 2023 Audi Q8 A Good SUV?

There is so much talent in this class that a sporty-looking two-row Q7 is unlikely to cut it for a podium finish. As we've found in our Audi Q8 review, there's is nothing wrong with the way it drives, but it's not a class leader, and getting it to handle and ride with true verve requires you to opt for the expensive Prestige trim to get the air suspension and add the rear-axle steering. The base trims don't feel as special to pilot as the Q8's sportier rivals. Another minus is the dearth of buttons inside, forcing you to rely on the touchscreen more, which can be a distraction. Last of all, you cannot justify a Q8 as a practical purchase if a three-row Q7 is both cheaper and roomier. Still, the Q8 is better than many coupe-styled crossover SUVs out there, with a good amount of space, also in the rear, plus a healthy trunk, even if it can only seat five. It might not be the ultimate sporty SUV in its class, but for an Audi enthusiast wishing to upgrade to an SUV, it's an interesting alternative to an A8 - for less money.

What 2023 Audi Q8 Model Should I Buy?

With a price difference of over $10k between the base model and the Prestige, Audi offers a solid spread of features over the three Q8 trim levels. New owners will be pleased that all three trim levels share the same powertrain, which makes the purchasing decision slightly more straightforward, and it will all boil down to how many features you're looking for. The Premium is no pauper and comes with a stack of new tech features that places it right next to its competition. Standard features such as front and rear parking sensors, three-zone automatic climate control, eight airbags, and Audi pre sense front are all notable features. For only $4,500 extra, we would go with the Premium Plus, which adds features such as a Bang & Olufsen sound system and a surround-view camera system. The Premium Plus offers the best value for money in terms of standard features, especially since lane-keep assist and adaptive cruise control were also recently added.

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