Audi is preparing to launch new performance-oriented variants of a couple of its popular SUVs in the U.S. for the new model year.
The 2020 Audi SQ7 serves as the first performance variant of the brand’s newly updated three-row SUV to be sold in the U.S. The Audi SQ8 slots between the Audi Q8 flagship SUV, and the first ever RS SUV, the all-new RS Q8.
On the inside, the SQ7 and SQ8 have standard front S sport seats each with heating and ventilation, keeping passengers comfortable. The seats feature cross-stitched leather, unique to the S models.
Balancing premium performance, utility and design, the SQ7 and SQ8 arrive in U.S. Audi showrooms in the late spring, with final pricing and packaging to be announced closer to their on-sale dates.
Both the SQ7 and SQ8 are equipped with a 4.0-liter, twin-turbocharged V8 engine, capable of generating 500 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque to all four wheels via an eight-speed Tiptronic transmission and standard quattro all-wheel drive.
The pairing allows both S models to accelerate from 0-60 mph in 4.3 seconds on the way to a 155 mph top-track speed.
Bolstering cornering capabilities of both vehicles is an available quattro sport differential, which boosts the capabilities of the standard vehicles’ 40:60 front-to-rear torque split and sending up to 80% of the vehicles’ power to the rear axle with the added strength of being able to transfer torque from side-to-side at the rear wheels to help enable better handling.
Audi also has applied other technologies to enhance the driving experience of both the SQ7 and SQ8, including standard all-wheel steering that can turn the rear wheels in the opposite direction of the front wheels to aid low-speed maneuverability and handling, as well as stability at higher speeds.
Also available on SQ7 and SQ8 models will also be electromechanical active roll stabilization, which can stiffen the front and rear stabilizer bars when dynamic driving takes precedence over cruising.
The 2020 SQ7 and SQ8 are differentiated with Alu-optic or Black-optic design elements, including air intake blades, side sill blades, standard silver mirror caps and quad exhaust outlets. SQ7 models carry a new octagonal Singleframe grille and will come with 20- or 21-inch wheel designs. The SQ8 will also feature an Alu-optic grille surround and will have standard 21- and available 22-inch wheel designs.