Every now and then a car arrives that gets our hearts racing. It feels like an age since that last happened, or the Pandemic has been playing tricks on me, but either way, the Audi RS Q8 has arrived in South Africa and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
THE GOOD STUFF
Let’s kick off with a bang and speak about the engine and all the good stuff. Under the bonnet of this beast is a 4.0-litre V8 bi-turbocharged petrol engine with direct injection that propels this large SUV Coupé to 100 km/h in just 3.8 seconds. It takes just 13.7 seconds to get you to 200 km/h (not that you should be going that speed, unless you’re on a closed road that is). The power outputs sit at a whopping 441 kW and 800 Nm. Can you almost hear what that must all sound like? It is voluminous to say the least. As is typical of Audi’s RS models, the dual exhaust system features an oval tailpipe on each side and the driver can influence the sound of the engine via the Audi drive select system. That may come in handy when you don’t want to wake your neighbours up. Or if you want to make them green with envy, it is up to you.
What makes this premium SUV even more appealing is the fact that you can take it off road. But why would you? It is far too pretty to be taken in to unchartered territory only to come back bumped, bruised and scratched. But it is nice to know that you can swivel in to Off-Road Mode and the standard air suspension can be raised to a height of 90 mm, which means you should be able to navigate an array of obstacles. But my advice, keep obstacles to a minimum, such as pavements and such. In case you wondering, the permanent all-wheel drive system is sent to all four wheels via the standard eight-speed tiptronic transmission.
The familiar MMI touch response display with the added RS displays in the Audi Virtual Cockpit. It provides info such as tyre pressure, torque, output, temperature, lap times and g-forces. The standard head-up display also offers several RS-specific graphics. You’ll sit on Valcona leather sport seats with a honeycomb pattern that will massage you if you so choose. They come standard in black but you can opt for cognac. The RS styling package also adds red contrast stitching throughout the cabin and there is an RS badge on the steering wheel. It may be fast and sporty, but it is still practical with a sliding three-seat rear bench.
AUDI RS Q8 IS PRICED AT…
It doesn’t come cheap, but you can pop an RS Q8 in your garage at a price of R2 354 500. Oh what I would give you have enough money to have this as a play thing.