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Audi previews Q8 flagship SUV

by Ronan Glon

The Q8 will make its debut this summer.

Audi has released a teaser image to preview the upcoming Q8. The model will make its public debut in early June.

The sketch suggests that, as you'd expect, the Q8 draws inspiration from the Q8 Concept introduced during last year's Detroit auto show. We see thin tail lights connected by a light bar, styling cues borrowed from the newest A7, and punched out quarter panels that are a tribute to the rally-winning Quattro.

Audi hasn't released images of the front end yet, though recent spy shots indicate it also falls in line with what we saw in Detroit last year. It's not saying what's under the sheet metal, either, but British magazine Autocar reports the Q8 will ride on the same basic platform as the Q7. Power will come from V6 and V8 engines, and we might see a high-performance RS Q8 join the line-up a little later in the production run.

The Q8 family will also include a plug-in hybrid model, according to the publication. Developed jointly with Porsche, the gasoline-electric system will deliver Prius-like emissions and up to 31 miles on electric range. It will also provide an acceleration boost when there is enough electricity in the battery pack.

Fittingly for a flagship, the Q8 will boast a list of tech features longer than Don Quixote. Key bullet points from it will include a 48-volt suspension system that keeps body roll in check, OLED displays in the cabin, Audi's most advanced semi-autonomous driving aids, and, for overseas markets, an electric turbocharger.

Audi will introduce the Q8 in early June, according to a mini Youtube series it recently announced, and the model will arrive in showrooms in the following months. Q8 production will take place in Bratislava, Slovakia, alongside the aforementioned Q7, the Porsche Cayenne, and the Volkswagen Touareg.