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THE NEW Audi Q8 e-tron SUV and Q8 e-tron Sportback recently received a coveted nod from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) based in the United States, notching the highest 2023 Top Safety Pick+ rating.
The two models joined another pair of 100% electric Audi SUVs, the Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 e-tron Sportback, in earning the Top Safety Pick+ honor.
The IIHS, a “preeminent nonprofit organization,” gave the Q8 e-tron SUV and Q8 e-tron Sportback battery electric vehicles, which debuted in the Philippines in August, the top rating based on the vehicles’ crashworthiness, as well as other factors such as crash avoidance and lighting technology.
The criteria for safety evaluations are essentially the same for electric vehicles and combustion-engine-powered models. However, Audi said it “goes further by ensuring the battery is safeguarded in the event of a crash. The e-tron models’ battery system consists of a rigid housing that not only protects its modules even during a major collision, but also acts as an additional reinforcement for the vehicle’s structure.”
Strengthening its award requirements in February this year, the IIHS updated its side crash evaluation to now involve 82% more energy compared to the original test, along with a new nighttime vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention test. The standard crash avoidance systems on the Q8 e-tron SUV and Q8 e-tron Sportback garnered a “Superior” rating for daytime use and an “Advanced” rating for nighttime use.
To qualify for the two highest IIHS awards in 2023, a vehicle must also now earn “Good” ratings in the driver- and passenger-side small front overlap and original moderate overlap front collision tests, and come equipped with “Acceptable” or “Good” headlights across all its variants.
The new Q8 e-tron SUV and Q8 e-tron Sportback are the flagship offerings in Audi’s now-extensive range of 100% electric SUVs and crossovers. Defining the latest models are updated design elements, improved efficiency and range, revised motors, more progressive steering, and enhanced chassis control systems.
Audi Philippines offers the Q8 in e-tron SUV 55 and e-tron SUV 50 versions.
The Q8 e-tron SUV 55 offers 408hp and 664Nm of torque. Depending on weather, road conditions, terrain and driving styles, the model can travel up to 582km when fully charged. The Q8 e-tron SUV 50, on the other hand, outputs 335hp and 664Nm, and has a driving range of up to 491km when fully charged.
The Q8 e-tron Sportback has the same power and torque ratings as the Q8 e-tron SUV 55, but its driving range is longer, thanks to a more aerodynamic coupe silhouette at the rear which can allow it to travel up to 600km when fully charged.