Test: Audi SQ8 e-tron Sportback

Test: Audi SQ8 e-tron Sportback

What? Wasn’t the Audi SQ8 a second version of the Q8?

Yes, and it still exists, because the SQ8 without adding the e-tron remains in the price list. What’s up with that? Until recently, the Q8 name was reserved for the brand’s largest, most complex SUV, the most attractive model variant next to the larger Q7. And the most sporty models were called SQ8 or RS Q8. They still exist, but Audi has decided to call the larger electric SUV we knew as the E-Tron and E-Tron Sportback (with a sliding roofline) the Q8 e-tron from now on. And while the top model of the electric car was first called the E-tron S, with or without the addition of the Sportback, Audi now calls it the SQ8 e-tron, so in terms of the test car it is the SQ8 e-tron Sportback. .

Audi SQ8 e-tron Sportback with stickers, because we drove it at the AutoBild Test the Best event.

Is the SQ8 e-tron Sportback as powerful as its name without the added e-tron?

Yes, you can see it as a kind of electric counterpart to that old SUV with a combustion engine, these days it uses gasoline, although you can also get an SQ8 with a diesel TDI until 2020. In terms of power, the SQ8 e-tron can easily compete with 507 hp SQ8 on gasoline. Nothing has changed in the power of the EV with three electric motors during the facelift and name change. One of them is for the front axle and two are driving the rear axle. In total they come from 503 hp.

Small frunk in front of the Audi SQ8 e-tron, there is one electric motor in the nose, there are two in the rear axle.

How fast is the Audi SQ8 e-tron Sportback then?

In 4.5 seconds it roars from 0 to 100 km / h, although thunder may not be the right word. It roars with a powerful artificial sound to a surprisingly high speed on the short circuit where we test the SQ8 e-tron Sportback. It is especially true that it is 973 Nm of torque that makes 2,600 kg feel like a little, and the first step of breaking shows that the brakes also succeed quite well. The air suspension and electronic controls then control with a lot of maneuverability, although you feel that the heavy piece of the car is going through the corners very quickly.

What do you see about the two electric motors on the rear axle?

The laws of nature can be ignored to a certain extent, but if you then lift the accelerator pedal to get the nose in deeper when going very fast through a corner, then a dollop of gas afterwards is enough to allow the action to close the corner. proceed flawlessly. The 98 kW electric motor that controls the outer rear wheel then delivers more power, another device with the same power that powers the inner rear wheel knows that it should deliver less and this creates torque vectoring. The electric motor on the front axle has an output of 124 kW. If all three come in full action, adding even ensures that the power increases to 370 kW, which is more than the sum of the three powers added together.

Engines remain the same, what has changed with the transition from the E-Tron S Sportback to the SQ8 e-tron Sportback?

Nothing changes in its power characteristics, it is mainly in improving efficiency. Because Audi has reduced the drag coefficient of the Q8 e-tron to a value as low as 0.27 and has even managed to reduce the drag coefficient of the Sportback to 0.24, electric SUVs must be able to squeeze even more of the amount of energy, but especially a large package of the battery does very well for the range. Thanks to a battery with a capacity of 106 kWh and cells with high energy density, Audi mentions a range of 510 km for the top version of the electric SUV. A significant gain compared to the 370 km spent on the pre-facelift model.

The Sportback is simpler. How far does the ‘regular’ SQ8 e-tron go?

It saves 16 km. The range of the SQ8 e-tron with a standard SUV shape is 494 km with the same technology.

What is the utility of the SQ8 e-tron Sportback according to the manufacturer’s specifications?

Average consumption is 26.4 kWh per 100 km. Of course you shouldn’t go crazy like we did during a short introduction to the Bridgestone tire test circuit during the European AutoBild Test the Best Event, organized by our German partner. The guy was short and was given the opportunity to experience the dynamic characteristics of the SQ8 Sportback e-tron.

Audi SQ8 e-tron Sportback

Less than 300 kilometers of range, that’s what you get from pedaling on the circuit.

Surely such a thick EV with an S label drives fast?

Unfortunately, don’t expect speed from the SQ8 e-tron Sportback that will allow you to seriously compete with the big boys on the autobahn. As is possible with the Tesla Model X Long Range or Plaid. They run 250 and 262 km/h respectively and also accelerate faster than the SQ8 e-tron. The Audi SQ8’s electric drivetrain overtakes the Q8’s e-tron at top speed. It can go 10 km/h faster and is set to 210 km/h. That speed will be on display shortly at the introduction of the Bridgestone test track in Italy.

Can the SQ8 e-tron charge faster than the E-Tron S?

If you want to blast Germany fast, it helps that you can now charge with 170 kW on the fast charger. That was 150 kW. It’s not a basic value, especially when you look at the charging speeds that Porsche and Tesla achieve.

Audi SQ8 e-tron Sportback

Are there any external changes and name changes?

The appearance has also been updated. The improved aerodynamics is due to a changed front end with a different emblem, smoother surfaces on the grille, a wheel spoiler on the rear axle and a different wheel design. The intervention is subtle but has its effect, the SQ8 Sportback looks cleaner than the E-Tron S Sportback was before the name change. From August, the sports version is available as a regular SUV and as a Sportback.