PHS Automotive Malaysia introduced the Audi Q8 e-tron today with two variants for each bodystyle - Sportback and er…non-Sportback. Malaysia is the first Southeast Asian market to receive the Q8 e-tron, imported from Audi's production facility in Belgium.
The starting price for the Audi Q8 e-tron, without insurance and inclusive of on-the-road charges, is RM384,790. This makes it slightly more affordable than the entry-level BMW iX, which starts at RM385,430. Similarly, the Mercedes EQC400 4Matic is priced at RM393,888.
The aforementioned price applies to the base Q8 e-tron advanced 50 quattro model from Audi. It is equipped with two electric motors that deliver a combined system output of 340 PS (335 hp or 250 kW) and 664 Nm of torque. This configuration allows for a 0-100 km/h acceleration time of six seconds and a top speed of 200 km/h.
The electric motors of the Q8 e-tron are powered by a lithium-ion battery with a total energy capacity of 95 kWh (89 kWh usable). This battery enables a range of up to 410 km according to the WLTP standard. Charging the battery to full capacity takes approximately 9.15 hours with an 11-kW AC charger (Type 2). However, using DC fast charging (CCS2) at a maximum input of 150 kW, the battery can reach a 0-80% state of charge (SoC) in just 28 minutes.
In terms of features, the Q8 e-tron advanced 50 quattro model includes adaptive air suspension, 20-inch Graphite Gray five-arm dynamic style alloy wheels, man-made 'mono.pur 550' leather upholstery, LED headlamps with high-beam assist, the High-Gloss styling package, a leatherette dashboard, and an interior with an aluminum look and glossy black operating buttons.
The vehicle also comes equipped with the Audi virtual cockpit plus, which is a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, and the MMI Navigation plus infotainment system with MMI touch response. This system consists of dual high-resolution touchscreen displays. The upper display is a 10.1-inch unit that provides access to most vehicle functions, while just below it, there is an 8.6-inch display for climate control and selected features.
Completing the list of features for the base option, the Audi Q8 e-tron includes the Audi smartphone interface, which supports Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. It also offers powered front seats with a memory function for the driver, four-zone climate control, Audi drive select, a powered tailgate, and eight airbags. Safety features encompass Audi pre sense front and rear (including autonomous emergency braking), adaptive cruise control (with a speed limiter, efficiency assist, swerve assist, and turn assist), lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, as well as front and rear cross traffic assist.
For those willing to spend more for enhanced performance and luxurious equipment, there's the Q8 e-tron S line 55 quattro variant available at a retail price of RM475,790. This variant showcases a sportier S line trim both inside and out. Its all-wheel drive electric powertrain delivers 408 PS (402 hp or 300 kW) and 664 Nm of torque. Consequently, the acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h is reduced to 5.6 seconds, while the top speed remains the same. The battery in the Q8 e-tron S line 55 quattro has a higher gross energy capacity of 114 kWh (106 kWh usable), which extends the range to 481 km.
In terms of charging capabilities, the higher-spec variant supports AC charging at a faster rate of 22 kW, enabling a full charge in six hours. The DC fast charging rate is also increased to 170 kW, and it takes approximately 31 minutes to reach a 0-80% state of charge (SoC).
The Q8 e-tron S line 55 quattro enhances the features offered by the base variant by incorporating several additions. These include 21-inch five-arm black turbine style alloy wheels, Valcona leather upholstery, matrix LED headlamps, an illuminated Singleframe grille, a panoramic glass sunroof, illuminated S line scuff plates, a three-spoke flat-bottomed steering wheel, an air ionizer and aromatization system for the climate control, power-assisted door closing, and virtual exterior mirrors (replacing traditional side mirrors with cameras).
Moving on from the standard Q8 e-tron, there is also a Sportback version available for those seeking a more dynamic shape. The Q8 Sportback e-tron offers a coupe-like body style and mirrors the two variants available in the regular model.
However, opting for the Sportback does entail a slight sacrifice in terms of boot space, which is reduced to 528 liters at the rear. The pricing for the Q8 Sportback e-tron advanced 50 quattro starts at RM390,790 and features the same powertrain as the regular-bodied equivalent mentioned earlier. The performance figures remain unchanged, although the range is slightly improved at 415 km, likely due to the vehicle's profile. The charging specifications remain identical.
Likewise, the equipment provided with the Q8 Sportback e-tron advanced 50 quattro closely resembles the non-Sportback variant, but there are noticeable distinctions. The base version of the Q8 Sportback e-tron includes sport adaptive air suspension, 20-inch Graphite Gray five-arm Aero ring style alloy wheels, Valcona leather upholstery, matrix LED headlamps, the Black Styling package, red-painted brake calipers, and dark Matte Brushed decorative inserts. These features are not available for the Q8 e-tron advanced 50 quattro.
Moving on to the final variant in the Q8 e-tron lineup, we have the Q8 Sportback e-tron S line 55 quattro, which is priced at RM485,790. Similar to the previous variant mentioned, it features a powertrain comparable to the non-Sportback equivalent mentioned earlier. Additionally, it offers slightly improved range at 487 km. The 22-kW AC charging and 170-kW DC fast charging capabilities remain the same.
The kit list is also similar, with the range-topping Q8 Sportback e-tron mirroring the Q8 Sportback e-tron advanced 50 quattro, except for one notable distinction: the Audi Sport 21-inch Black Metallic five-arm Aero structure style alloy wheels.
With every purchase of a Q8 e-tron, customers will receive a standard two-year warranty and five-year roadside assistance. The electric vehicle battery is also protected by an eight-year, 160,000-km warranty. Additionally, all variants have the option to include the Audi Assurance Package (AAP) for an additional RM13,000. This package extends the vehicle warranty for three more years, resulting in a total of five years of coverage.
All e-tron models sold are equipped with an e-tron Charging System Compact. This system comprises an intelligent compact charger and power cables. It is compatible with a standard household power socket, providing an output range of 1.8 to 2.3 kW. Alternatively, it can be used with a three-phase power supply, offering an output of 11 kW.
To prevent potential overload on the home's electrical system, the charging unit allows users to set the charging power to 100% or 50%. This provides flexibility and ensures the safe charging of the vehicle. As an additional perk, owners will receive complimentary RM1,000 JomCharge credits, which are valid for one year.
There's just something about cars. It's a conveyance, it's a liability, it's a tool; but it can also be a source of joy, pride, inspiration and passion. It's much like clothes versus fashion. And like the latter, the pursuit of perfection never ends.