Audi prices up facelifted Q8 e-tron SUV

The Audi e-tron has been renamed the ‘Q8 e-tron’, as part of a midlife facelift that introduces minor exterior and interior design changes and battery improvements that increase the SUV’s range. The updated model line is now on sale.

First launched in the UK back in early 2019, the Audi e-tron was the German manufacturer’s first production electric car. Going on sale in the UK this month, Audi is hoping that the Q8 e-tron will be able to challenge the sales of newer large all-electric SUVs like the BMW iX, as well as the Tesla Model Y, which currently occupies a place in the UK’s best-seller’s list.

Like the current e-tron range, the Q8 e-tron will be offered in the regular SUV and ‘Sportback’ coupé-SUV body styles, which both come with drivetrain upgrades and styling tweaks.

The range of trim grades on offer is unchanged, consisting of the entry-level ’50’ model, the mid-range ’55’ and the top-spec ‘S’ trim – all of these variants being four-wheel drive.

The Audi Q8 e-tron range – Sportback model (left) and SUV model (right)

The standard SUV is powered by a 89kWh battery, while the more powerful ’55’ and ‘S’ trims make use of a larger 106kWh battery. ’50’ and ’55’ Q8 e-tron models pair the battery with two electric motors, while the ‘S’ is fitted with three electric motors, which boosts the range-topping model’s power output and top speed.

Trim grade Battery size Electric motors Power output Top speed Battery range
Q8 e-tron ’50’ 89kWh Two
(one in front, one in rear)
340hp 124mph 281 miles
(290 miles for Sportback)
Q8 e-tron ’55’ 106kWh Two
(one in front, one in rear)
408hp 124mph 330 miles
(343 miles for Sportback)
Q8 e-tron ‘S’ 106kWh Three
(one in front, two in rear)
503hp 130mph 284 miles
(295 miles for Sportback)

When it comes to battery range, the middling ’55’ option can travel the furthest on a single charge – Audi promising a range of 330 miles in SUV guise. Prior to this facelift, the Audi e-tron offered a maximum battery range of 252 miles.

Due to its sloping roofline that improves aerodynamics, Audi claims that Sportback models are more efficient than SUV variants across each trim level, asserting that the ’55’ Sportback can muster a range-leading 343 miles on a full battery.

The manufacturer says that 89kWh models can charge from 10% to 80% in 28 minutes, while 106kWh models can complete this task in 31 minutes.

Exterior styling changes include a new-look front grille that is enclosed by black inserts and re-designed chevron-shaped air intakes on the lower front bumper. While the Matrix LED headlights are the same shape, they come with additional functions, including an orientation light for country roads and a lane light with a direction indicator.

Stepping inside, the cabin looks largely the same post-update, but Audi say that the updated e-tron now features insulation and damping and carpeting made of recycled materials. Parts of the dashboard can be specced in a material made out of recycled plastic bottles too.

Key trim level features

Entry-level ‘Sport’ (from £67,800)

  • 20-inch alloy wheels finished in grey
  • Adaptive air suspension 
  • Matrix LED headlights        
  • LED rear lights
  • Power-operated tailgate 
  • Keyless entry                                                      
  • Electrically adjustable and heated front seats
  • Leather upholstery 
  • Four-spoke leather steering wheel
  • Ten-inch infotainment display compatible with navigation
  • Lower nine-inch touch screen display for car functions
  • Audi Virtual Cockpit          
  • 10-speaker Sound System                             
  • Wireless smartphone charging
  • Cruise control with speed limiter
  • Lane departure warning                   
  • Rear-view camera
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • Traffic sign recognition

‘S Line’ (from £72,800)

  • All ‘Sport’ features that are not replaced
  • 21-inch alloy wheels finished in grey
  • Adaptive sport air suspension 
  • Sportier front and rear bumper design
  • Rear privacy glass
  • Valcona leather upholstery with ‘S’ branding
  • Three-spoke leather steering wheel with ‘S’ branding

‘Black Edition’ (from £75,150)

  • All features from lower trim levels that are not replaced
  • 21-inch alloy wheels finished in black
  • Audi beam with e-tron logo                                           
  • Door mirrors in black          
  • Black window surrounds and grille and bumper accents

Range-topping ‘Vorsprung’ (from £89,800)

  • All features from lower trim levels that are not replaced
  • 22-inch alloy wheels
  • Digital Matrix Lights                                                     
  • Audi Beam with Vorsprung logo  
  • Virtual door mirrors
  • Automatic windscreen wipers
  • Heated leather steering wheel
  • Electronic steering column adjustment     
  • Audi virtual cockpit plus
  • Technology Pack Pro    
  • Tour Pack      
  • City Assist Pack
  • Parking Assist Pack

The brand says that 40 driver assistance systems are available in the Audi Q8 e-tron, which make use of five radar sensors, five cameras and 12 ultrasonic sensors fitted to the car. A ‘remote park assist plus’ feature will join the optional extras list sometime in 2023, which allows the driver to instruct the car to park on its own by using their smartphone.

Audi is now taking orders for the facelifted SUV this month, with prices starting at just north of £68k. Opting for a Sportback model adds a further £2.5k to the list price. The top-spec SQ8 e-tron in ‘Vorsprung’ guise costs around £115k. The first of these all-electric Q8 deliveries are expected to arrive in the UK in April 2023.

Now almost four years old, the Audi e-tron has received particular praise for its smooth and quiet drivetrain, practicality and overall refinement. As the all-electric SUV has received some reviewer criticism for its battery range, this update has the potential to increase its standing in our Expert Rating Index – it currently holds an Expert Rating of 72%.

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