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  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - hero front
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - hero side
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - front end
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - headlights
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - front aero
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - alloy wheels
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear doors
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - pillarless windows
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear end
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - spoiler
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear lights
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - exhaust
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - dashboard
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - instrument cluster
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - infotainment
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - satnav
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - climate controls
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - centre console
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - wireless charger
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - raise suspension
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - light controls
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - reading lights
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - speakers
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - front seats
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear climate controls
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear seats
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - boot
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - engine
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - on the road front
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - on the road rear
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - static hero
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - hero front
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - hero side
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - front end
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - headlights
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - front aero
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - alloy wheels
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear doors
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - pillarless windows
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear end
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - spoiler
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear lights
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - exhaust
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - dashboard
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - instrument cluster
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - infotainment
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - satnav
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - climate controls
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - centre console
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - wireless charger
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - raise suspension
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - light controls
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - reading lights
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - speakers
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - front seats
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear climate controls
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - rear seats
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - boot
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - engine
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - on the road front
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - on the road rear
  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - static hero

How many modern premium car makers, when designing an all-new, clean-sheet, passenger car flagship, would come up with a high-rise, super-stylish large SUV? Right now, with plenty doing exactly that, it’d probably be quicker to count how many wouldn’t – or yet haven’t.

While the Audi Q8, the new range-topping, coupé-aping luxury SUV to which we’re turning our attention this week, might be fairly closely related to the firm’s more conventional-looking Q7 and might also be following one or two other well-known added-desirability SUVs into an already reasonably well-established and lucrative market niche, it is perhaps most interesting to contemplate it along those lines.

Simon Davis

Simon Davis

For more than a decade, the A8 limousine sat pretty and unchallenged at the very top of the Audi showroom model hierarchy, before the R8 super-sports car came along in 2006, admittedly as something of a speciality interest. Now, though, the Audi ‘8’ club swells to include a third member. So who’s the daddy: limousine, sports car or pumped-up SUV?

Here’s our chance to examine the newest leadership candidate’s credentials.

Top 5 Luxury SUVs

  • Range Rover Sport

    Range Rover Sport

    1

  • Land Rover Discovery review hero front

    Land Rover Discovery

    2

  • The second generation Audi Q7

    Audi Q7

    3

  • Volvo XC90

    The new Volvo XC90 costs from £45,750

    Volvo XC90

    4

  • Range Rover Velar

    Range Rover Velar

    5

Driven this week

  • Litchfield Porsche 911 Carrera T 2018 first drive review - hero front

  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - hero front

  • McLaren 600LT 2018 first drive review - hero front

The Q8’s mission, according to its creator, is to combine the elegance of a luxury coupé with the comfort, convenience and versatility of a large SUV. It’s a brief that has led several cars of its ilk down the garden path over the past few years, at least as far as the pronouncements of the Autocar road test are concerned.

Making big, versatile and spacious cars look more elegant has often only proved to render them less spacious and versatile while adding little in the way of driver appeal. However, the car-buying public doesn’t appear to care too much: with BMW X6 sales now closing in on half a million, models of the BMW’s ilk are undoubtedly here to stay.

Stand by, in which case, to find out what Audi can get right that BMW didn’t quite and whether less can mean more when it comes to full-sized luxury four-wheel-drive Audis.

What Car? New car buyer marketplace

First drives

  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S-Line 2018 UK first drive hero front

    Audi Q8 50 TDI quattro S line 2018 UK review

    Audi’s sportier luxury SUV remains composed on UK roads, but the single launch engine doesn’t provide the performance suggested by the car’s styling

  • Audi Q8 2018 first drive review hero front

    Audi Q8 2018 review

    Range-topping SUV is short on the styling and performance pizzazz needed to make it a Range Rover Sport-toppling style icon, although it’s an accomplished luxury car

Driven this week

  • Litchfield Porsche 911 Carrera T 2018 first drive review - hero front

  • Audi Q8 50 TDI Quattro S Line 2018 road test review - hero front

  • McLaren 600LT 2018 first drive review - hero front

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