New Audi Q8 e-tron Electric SUV Starts Production In Brussels

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The car formerly known as e-tron should arrive next year.

Way back in 2019, Audi told CarBuzz there was a good chance that its e-tron electric SUV would change names in the second generation. With the debut of the 2024 Audi Q8 e-tron and 2024 Audi SQ8 e-tron, we finally learned what that new name would be. Along with the reboot comes a number of big improvements. The Q8 and SQ8 e-tron see greatly improved range (around 300 miles on the EPA cycle) thanks to a larger battery and other performance enhancements.

Production for the Q8 e-tron has officially kicked off at Audi's Brussels plant, which has been carbon neutral since 2018. Starting in 2025, all Audi production plants will be carbon neutral as part of the company's Mission:Zero initiative. The Belgium factory has already churned out around 160,000 units of the original e-tron from the time it went on sale.

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The new Q8 e-tron produces up to 335 horsepower and 490 lb-ft of torque in 50 guise, while the 55 model dials the output to 402 hp. Stepping up to the SQ8 adds a tri-motor setup developing 496 hp and 718 lb-ft. Official EPA numbers aren't available yet, but the larger 114 kWh gross battery (up from 95 kWh) should easily beat out the outgoing e-tron's lackluster 226-mile range.

"With its increased efficiency and range, as well as its sharpened design, the new Audi Q8 e-tron is a strong statement for electromobility," said Audi board member for Production and Logistics, Gerd Walker. "Brussels has done valuable pioneering work. We are learning from our experience of having delivered around 160,000 vehicles worldwide. As the next step, we will leverage this experience to ramp up battery production in Ingolstadt."

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The Q8 e-tron also sees faster charging on the upper models, with speeds up to 170 kW. This should get the battery from 0% to 80% charge in around 30 minutes.

Speaking of charging, the Brussels plant has one of the largest photovoltaic systems in the region, which can generate around 9,000-megawatt hours of power from sustainable sources. That would be enough to charge approximately 90,000 e-tron units. Starting next year, the plant will build the Q4 e-tron alongside its larger sibling.

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