- Superb cabin dominated by high-res touchscreens
- Driving position slightly lower than the Q7
- Reasonable all-round visibility
Despite the Q8 sharing its underpinnings with the Q7, its interior will be far more familiar to anyone who has sat in an Audi A6, A7 or A8, all of which share the same style of cabin. Not that this is a bad thing, with Q8’s cabin easily one of – if not the – most impressive in its class.
Superb interior quality
Every material feels carefully chosen and nicely trimmed, with a real sense efficient luxury permeating through the soft leathers and unpolished woods. The Q7 has an excellent cabin, but the Q8’s is a cut above.
Sitting in an unmistakeably raised-up (but quite as high as a Q7) driving position, the driver gets an excellent view out of the front and shouldn’t have any problem getting comfortable thanks to standard-fit electrically adjustable seats.
Three large displays dominate the cabin
Casting their eyes lower, meanwhile, reveals a cabin dominated by the three primary displays. These range from the Virtual Cockpit display that replaces traditional dashboard dials, to the dual central screens.
The lower of which is an 8.6-inch touchscreen display that allows the driver to control climate control and driver-assist functions, while the 10.1-inch upper screen controls sat-nav, media, telephone and settings.
Both touchscreens help to create one of the best infotainment systems around, yet this reviewer can’t help but think that many customers will miss the rotary dial controller method found on older Audis. Regardless of how slick the touchscreen is, it usually feels harder to hit exactly the right icon on the move than it is to twiddle a physical dial between options.
Reasonable all-round visibility
The driver has a good view out of the front – thanks to a large windscreen and respectably sized A-pillars – yet the rear C-pillar is rather chunky. Still, with front and rear parking sensors, plus a rear camera as standard, manoeuvring the Q8 into tight spots should be reasonably painless.
- Air suspension as standard
- Excellent all-round rife comfort and refinement
- Supportive leather seats
Unlike the Q7, the Q8 comes as standard with adaptive air suspension, controlled via the vehicle’s drive select system. The upshot is that, even on massive 22-inch wheels, the Q8 rides smoothly over all but the most pockmarked surfaces.
It can be a little slow to respond over larger potholes (creating a noticeable), but the cabin is well-isolated nonetheless.
Refinement is excellent regardless of engine
You’ll hear significant road noise from the large wheels if a Q8 ever drives past you, but rest assured the level of sound deadening means the cabin is a tranquil place to be at motorway speeds. Noise from the petrol engine is predictably less than the diesel, but not by as much as you’d expect. The 286hp 3.0-litre diesel is in one of its most refined guises in the Q8.
Wind noise is all but eradicated, yet there is a squeak from the door mirrors at 65mph and above; a trait shared with the A8.
Other trinkets to improve passenger comfort include heated and ventilated electrically adjustable front seats (plus heated rear seats on Vorsrpung models), ambient lighting and a panoramic glass sunroof (also on Vorsprung models).
Comfortable and supportive leather seats
S Line spec models get Nappa leather sports seats and alcantara upholstery as standard, while Vorsprung versions upgrade to Super sports seats in Valcona leather. Both are exceptionally comfortable on long journeys and supportive in tight bends.