For a little while we’ve known that Audi Sport plans on expanding. Recent interviews with Audi Sport boss Stephan Winkelmann have told us that more SUVs and more luxurious models will be coming to the lineup. The first of those Audi Sport SUVs will likely be the Audi RS Q8.
Audi recently filed a trademark with the European Union Intellectual Property Office for the “RS Q8” nameplate. So it seems as if the Ingolstadt-based brand is already in the works on one. It would make sense that this would be the first RS SUV to come from the newly-named Audi Sport. The brand is trying hard to rid itself of the harsh image that its diesel scandal has given it. A way to do that is to push hybrid and electric models. The Audi Q8 is one of those models. It also wants the Audi Sport brand to grow and become more mainstream, such as BMW M and Mercedes-AMG. One way to do that is to offer SUVs, which are popular sellers in luxury-performance segments.
This upcoming Audi RS Q8 could come with either a hybrid powertrain or a conventional one. The standard Audi Q8 will be a plug-in hybrid SUV, so it’s certainly possible that the RS Q8 could be one as well. Though, for RS-treatment, it could get something…spicier.
So it could get something like the brand’s new 2.9 liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine, which makes 450 hp in the RS5, but mated to an electric motor. This could help give it the performance an RS car would need while still keeping its green image. Or, it could have the new 4.0 liter twin-turbocharged V8 that’s used in the Porsche Panamera Turbo. Though, to be fair, we have no idea what Audi actually plans for the RS Q8.
Either way, we’re very excited to see what Audi has in store for such a car and we’ll be following it very closely.