The flagship Audi Q8 luxury crossover is finally getting an S model, but don't expect it in the U.S. anytime soon. Why? Well, it's a diesel. The 2020 Audi SQ8's diesel engine sounds pretty sweet, too, as it makes 429 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. On top of that, Audi says that on the European test cycle, it delivers 30 mpg in combined driving.
There's a lot of cool mechanical technology under the skin of the SQ8. That torquey engine is a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8, and like other diesel Audis, it features an electrically driven supercharger powered by the 48-volt electrical system, to provide more immediate boost at low rpm.
The chassis can be fitted with optional rear-wheel steering and electronically controlled anti-roll bars to reduce body roll. A torque-vectoring rear differential and limited-slip center differential are available, too, all of which should make this big crossover pretty nimble.
Audi also added subtle but distinct visual tweaks to the SQ8. All SQ8s get a silver grille surround and matching lower trim to make it look lower and more aggressive. At the back, it gets quad tailpipes and a faux diffuser design on the bumper. Inside, the SQ8 gets more aggressively bolstered and sportier-designed seats.
As we already mentioned, we wouldn't count on this coming to America since it's a diesel VW product. If we ever get our own SQ8, it will probably get a gas engine, probably shared with the Porsche Cayenne. For European buyers, you'll be able to get one this summer, but it's not cheap. The base price is 102,900 euros, which is just over $116,000 at current exchange rates.