If you’re currently driving an Audi Q7 or Q8 SUV but are considering going EV next time around, the 2024 Q8 e-tron (previously known simply as the e-tron) will provide you with an easy transition. Its design and overall vibe are similar to the rest of the luxury automaker’s lineup, so the only element to adjust to is the powertrain. Two electric motors provide all-wheel drive and up to 402 horsepower. Acceleration is strong, but not as rushed as in rifle-shot rivals like the BMW iX, Jaguar I-Pace, or Tesla Model X. If you’re up for a quicker version Q8 e-tron, there’s an SQ8 e-tron (reviewed separately), which offers 496 horsepower. High-tech features dot the Q8 e-tron’s hushed cabin, which is something Audi loyalists have come to expect. There are two body styles to choose from—the standard Q8 e-tron and the sportier, fastback Q8 e-tron Sportback, but neither shout about their eco-friendliness—in fact, they couldn’t look more conventional. Whichever body style you choose, the Q8 e-tron comes with a battery pack that provides a usable real-world driving range that promises to be competitive with that of other luxury EV SUVs. Plus, it can be charged quickly at a public charging station if you’re traveling long distances.
What’s New for 2024?
For 2024 the e-tron and e-tron Sportback SUVs have been rechristened as the Q8 e-tron and Q8 e-tron Sportback, presumably to avoid confusion with other members of Audi’s growing EV lineup—all of which use some form of the e-tron name. To mark the occasion, Audi has given the SUVs a styling refresh that includes a redesigned grille, restyled lighting elements, and updated wheel designs. Both models now also sport a larger, 106.0-kWh battery pack, which should give the Q8 e-tron models more range and the ability to better compete with rivals. Last year, a higher-performance S e-tron model was offered, but that has been spun off as the SQ8 e-tron, which we review separately.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
Sportback Premium Plus
Audi hasn’t released pricing information on the 2024 Q8 e-tron models, but in the past, we’ve recommended the entry-level Premium trims since they offer a comprehensive suite of standard features at a reasonable—for a luxury EV SUV—price. When learn more about how each trim will be priced and equipped, we’ll update this story with those details.
EV Motor, Power, and Performance
Beneath the Q8 e-tron’s heavily creased bodywork are two electric motors, one located at the front axle and the other at the rear. Together they provide electronic all-wheel drive, but the rear motor does most of the work. In regular driving situations, they make a combined 355 horsepower and 414 pound-feet of torque. However, putting the shifter into Sport mode briefly unlocks 402 ponies and 490 pound-feet of torque. Our driving impressions revealed that the Q8 e-tron was swift and composed. Its snappy acceleration is typical of electric vehicles, and the smooth, quiet ride quality confirmed its luxury bona fides. Its stopping system expertly blended its traditional friction brakes with the obligatory regenerative braking system. However, we were disappointed that its regen wasn’t aggressive enough to enable one-pedal driving during our test of a Sportback model. Still, the Q8 e-tron demonstrates traditional SUV characteristics with the ability to tow up to 4000 pounds.
More on the Q8 e-tron SUV
Range, Charging, and Battery Life
Audi says the Q8 e-tron’s 106.0-kWh battery pack should provide up to 373 miles per charge, but that’s on the overly-optimistic European WLTP test cycle. Here in America, we’re expecting the maximum range estimate for the revised SUV to be slightly under 300 miles. If our estimation is correct, that would give the Q8 e-tron competitive range estimate versus rivals such as the I-Pace and the Model X. Every e-tron features a 170-kW fast charger that allows it to replenish 80 percent of its battery in about 30 minutes.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPGe
The EPA hasn’t released fuel economy estimates yet for the 2024 Q8 e-tron SUV but we expect they’ll be similar to the 2023 model, which was rated for up to 78 MPGe city and 79 MPGe highway. When we get a chance, we’ll test the Q8 e-tron on our 75-mph highway fuel economy route, which is part of our extensive testing regimen, and update this story with test results. For more information about the e-tron’s fuel economy, visit the EPA’s website.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
The Q8 e-tron’s most impressive technology is its electrified systems, but the five-seat crossover also has a cutting-edge and practical cabin. Its dashboard is packed with multiple high-resolution screens that include Audi’s digital gauge cluster—called Virtual Cockpit—and two flush-mounted touchscreens in the center. Of course, there are a variety of upscale options such as a head-up display and massaging front seats to further round out the Q8 e-tron’s sophisticated interior, which benefits from a flat floor thanks to its neatly packaged underfloor battery pack. That helps provide the regular Q8 e-tron with a commodious cargo area that measures 29 cubic feet behind the back row and 57 with the seatbacks folded flat. The Sportback’s sloping roofline reduces both figures by 2 cubes, but we still fit seven carry-on suitcases behind its rear seats—one less than in the regular e-tron.
The Car and Driver Difference
Infotainment and Connectivity
Every Q8 e-tron’s infotainment system runs through dual touchscreens, with a 10.1-inch display on top and an 8.6-inch unit below it. While the upper screen provides access to the standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto apps as well as the available Bang & Olufsen audio system, the bottom screen is mainly used for controlling the climate settings. Along with several power points, the system also features a subscription-based Wi-Fi hotspot; a wireless smartphone charger is optional.
How to Buy and Maintain a Car
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
Audi deploys an array of standard driver-assistance technology on both Q8 e-tron body styles, and they’re available with adaptive cruise control and self-parking assist. For more information about the Q8 e-tron SUV and Q8 e-tron Sportback’s crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:
- Standard forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking
- Standard blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert
- Standard lane-departure warning
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Audi provides a competitive albeit unremarkable limited and powertrain warranty. Rival EV SUVs such as the BMW iX and the Jaguar I-Pace offer lengthy complimentary scheduled maintenance plans to accompany their standard warranty packages.
- Limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Electrical components are covered for eight years or 100,000 miles
- No complimentary scheduled maintenance
2020 Audi e-tron Sportback
front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door hatchback
PRICE AS TESTED
$89,490 (base price: $78,395)
2 induction AC motors, 184 and 224 hp, 228 and 262 lb-ft; combined output, 402 hp, 490 lb-ft; 86.5-kWh lithium-ion battery pack
2 single-speed direct drive
Suspension (F/R): multilink/multilink
Brakes (F/R): 14.8-in vented disc/13.8-in vented disc
Tires: Bridgestone CrossContact LX Sport, 265/45R-21 108H M+S AO
Wheelbase: 115.0 in
Length: 193.0 in
Width: 76.2 in
Height: 65.0 in
Passenger volume: 102 ft3
Cargo volume: 27 ft3
Curb weight: 5819 lb
C/D TEST RESULTS
60 mph: 5.1 sec
100 mph: 13.3 sec
120 mph: 22.2 sec
Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 5.2 sec
Top gear, 30–50 mph: 2.3 sec
Top gear, 50–70 mph: 3.0 sec
1/4 mile: 13.8 sec @ 101 mph
Top speed (governor limited, mfr’s claim): 125 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 182 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.84 g
Standing-start accel times omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.
C/D FUEL ECONOMY
Observed: 73 MPGe
75-mph highway driving: 75 MPGe
Highway range: 220 miles
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Combined/city/highway: 77/76/78 MPGe
Range: 218 miles
C/D TESTING EXPLAINED
More Features and Specs