Audi Q8 (2018) Review

Audi Q8 (2018) At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
If you’re after a five-seat luxury SUV and you enjoy the finer things in life, then the 2018 Audi Q8 will suit you down to the ground.

+Looks good and interior is superb, packed with tech.

-Expensive and not quite as practical as Q7., eight-speed tiptronic gearbox is frustrating.

On average it achieves 87% of the official MPG figure

Even compared with high-class rivals such as the BMW X6 and Mercedes GLE Coupe, the Audi Q8 feels like a cut-above in terms of its interior quality, and that really helps justify the high price tag. It’ll also suit you if you value agile handling over outright comfort, because it feels impressively athletic in a set of bends, although despite there being a firm edge to the ride, this is not an uncomfortable car by any means. And, if you’re a gadget fan, the Q8 has that covered, too, with a huge variety of luxury equipment and all the latest infotainment tech.

There’s a very good reason why SUVs are so popular these days. They give family car buyers the space and practicality they need, but with all the style and luxury they desire. However, not everyone needs the versatility of a seven-seater, so the Audi Q8 is designed to dial down the former, and double-down on the latter.

If you do need seven seats, then Audi will point you towards the brilliant Q7. The five-seater Q8, meanwhile, has a slinkier, less-boxy design to make it more elegant and more desirable, desirability that’s topped off by the aspirational Audi badge.

There are plenty of other Audi trademarks that are present-and-correct, too, not least, the impeccable build quality.

Every surface you look at or touch is a treat for the eyes or the fingertips, so this feels like a very classy product indeed, good enough to have the beating of rivals such as the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe. Yes, this is a very expensive car, but jaw-dropping quality like this helps justify the price tag. So does the stack of luxury and safety equipment you get as standard, the latter of which helps the Q8 achieve that all-important five-star rating from Euro NCAP.

On the road, the Q8 is very relaxed and quiet, with fabulous rolling refinement and a diesel engine (we haven’t tried the petrol offering yet) that is smooth, subdued and effortlessly powerful. Granted, the ride isn’t as cosseting as the slushiest SUVs, but it’ll keep you comfortable most of the time, and you get impressively sharp handling as a payoff.

And practicality? Well, it may only have five seats, but they’re all just as roomy as the equivalent seats in the Q7, so this is a very roomy, very comfortable car. A big boot also helps it perform family duties impressively well.

Downsides? Well, the infotainment system could be a bit more user-friendly and, like we said earlier, it’s pretty pricey. But otherwise, the Q8 is a very good all-rounder that’s perfectly suited to the buyers it’s aimed at. If that’s you, then you’ll love it. 

What does a Audi Q8 (2018) cost?

Buy new from £56,669 (list price from £67,090)