2022 Audi SQ8 Review: Phat Mobile

Derryn Wong

Audi’s large coupe-styled SQ8 SUV packs power, technology and a ferocious image, Bat Fashion optional 

2023 Audi SQ8

Launched : December 2022 – Price S$597,112 with VES and COE
Five-door, large luxury coupe SUV, five-seats
507hp, 4.0-litre twin-turbo petrol, VES C2, 13.3L/100km

Muscular coupe-SUV image (Bat-theme optional)
Broad-range of performance
Lots of tech onboard

Limited visibility
High fuel consumption

If you were the kind of kid who favoured Batman over Superman, this is your ride.

A Batmobile has to be fast, full of techno-gadgetry, and darker than a panther on a moonless night. Audi’s SQ8 is all that, and the only Bat Thing it truly lacks is obvious fire shooting out of the rear, though it technically comes close even to that.

The Q8 is Audi’s large coupe-SUV, it’s Ingolstadt’s answer to the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe. The high-performance SQ8 variant was launched in Singapore late last year, along with the similarly-powered SQ7 we reviewed earlier. 

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

As with the regular Q8, the SQ8 has a sleeker silhouette and profile than the Q7 since it’s a coupe-SUV, though in this trim, it looks like a coupe-shaped piece of night. Black paint is the base, obviously, but there’s also the Black Appearance Package (S$4,495) which basically eliminates all the chrome and lays the ebony down heavy.

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -
Black Appearance Package adds black on black (on black, on black)

On this particular car, there are also the absolutely humungous 23-inch black wheels (S$3,575) which frame the only majorly non-black thing on the exterior, namely the large S-branded performance brakes.

There’s the usual brace of high-performance ’S’ car faster-looking bits : Aggressive body kit, silver mirror-caps, quad-exhausts, and so on. The end result is…let’s just say if Bruce Wayne drove this daily you wouldn’t need The Riddler’s genius to pinpoint the elephant-sized Bat Fact in the living room.

Of course you don’t have to go full-on Dark Knight, since there are a number of bright and funky paint options, and even more if you shell out for Audi’s custom programme, but the Bat Look does reflect the SQ8’s performance quite nicely.

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

Unlike the A8 luxury limo, the SQ7 and SQ8 both land here in a remarkable state of purity, at least for petrolheads : Both have start-stop, but lack a mild-hybrid system, and are powered solely by a 4.0-litre, biturbo V8 engine.

For driving purists, that’s a draw and an increasing rarity these days. Audi’s 4.0-litre V8 is a powerhouse of an engine, and the SQ8’s drivetrain is the sort that delivers big power without hesitation. The car’s all-wheel drive, adaptive air suspension, and all-wheel steering help overcome physics and disguise the car’s size and mass, but also give it the ability to do well in mundane driving as well.

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

As Ben summed up in his review of the SQ7, and like so many performance cars now, the SQ8 is an imposing, brawny machine and feels almost too big for Singapore. Both it, and the driver would be happier ranging on Malaysia’s more spacious roads.

Wrangling the SQ8 in Singapore can be tricky: As a large coupe-SUV, it can be difficult to see out of, and narrow carpark ramps will have you clenching your sphincter in fear for the gigantic 23-inch wheels.

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

The other downside is that while the SQ8 doesn’t have literal flames shooting out the back, it has figurative ones. The V8 does have cylinder-shutoff tech, but it’s at best a minor effect and the quoted fuel consumption is 13.1L/100km. In reality, you will likely never better 15L/100km, so it’s best you bring a Wayne-sized budget for fuel.

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

If you’re more a fan of Detective Comics, the SQ8 can also be specced with lots of clever tech – self-parking is standard, as is a 360 camera that depicts the exterior of the car, and active safety features. Adaptive cruise is optional (S$6,649), and if you really want the Bat Effect you can also spec night vision (S$12,009).

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

In the day-to-day, it’s still a very practical car, and there is a huge amount of space for passengers. Like other Audi Q vehicles, it has an adjustable second-row (60/40) which can move fore/aft, adjust backrest angle. They also fold down for cargo, a generous 605-litres, which expands to 1,755-litres with the seats down. Space enough to fit a half dozen, tied-up evildoers, stacked. For respectable occupants, there’s nice touches like rear blinds and soft-close doors.

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -

If the S version isn’t fast enough for you, there is also the RS Q8 – which editor Lionel dubbed a Sports Utility Velociraptor – which ups the performance, the skullduggery, and fuel consumption.

Otherwise, choice still abounds in the high-performance SUV world : BMW X6 M50i, Porsche Cayenne Coupe, Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe. You could even get close to ‘Batman’ spec in them, but for those with a conscience, there’s also a choice of a plug-in hybrid high-performance SUV, consisting of the Porsche Cayenne e-Hybrid, and the forthcoming BMW XM.

But if you want your thrills old-school vigilante style, then the SQ8 in this spec is just the Bat Thing. 

2023 Audi SQ8

2022 Audi SQ8 review - CarBuyer Singapore -
Drivetrain typePetrol engine
Engine3,996cc, V8, twin-turbocharged
Power507hp at 5500rpm
Torque770Nm at 2000-4000rpm
Gearbox8-speed dual-clutch
0-100km/h4.1 seconds
Top Speed250km/h
VES Banding / modifierC2 / +S$25,000
Fuel Efficiency13.1L/100km
AgentPremium Automobiles
PriceS$597,112 with COE
Verdict:V8-powered Audi SQ8 packs monstrous performance, excellent comfort and an entertaining drive – with coupe style –  at the expense of gigantic thirst


5 door 5 seat Audi coupe suv high performance large q8 sq8 SUV

About the Author

Derryn Wong

CarBuyer's former chief editor was previously the editor for Top Gear Singapore and a presenter for CNA's Cruise Control motoring segment.

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