Audi Q8 e-tron edition Dakar

Some carmakers have found that their expenditure in taking part in motorsports can pay off with increased sales of a model or greater customer interest, especially when there is a win with that model (or the racing version which is adapted from it). The marketing people may also have an opportunity to come up with special edition or two to celebrate a victory, gaining some extra sales.

In Audi’s case, the overall victory by the RS Q e-tron in the tough 2024 Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia has provided inspiration for a special edition that is known as the Q8 e-tron edition Dakar.

Audi RS e-tron for Dakar Rally 2024
The victorious RS Q e-tron in the 2024 Dakar Rally (above) has provided inspiration for the Q8 e-tron edition Dakar (below).

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

More rugged and muscular appearance
Priced in Germany from €119,900 (RM615,800), the fully electric SUV has been given a more rugged and muscular appearance with wider wheelarch trims at the front and rear. However, what really differentiates it from the normal Q8 e-tron is its taller stance.

2024 Audi Q8 e-tron EV
The standard Q8 e-tron is available in Malaysia, priced from RM388,990. Click here to know more.

Taller stance with all-terrain tyres
With the standard General Grabber AT3 all-terrain tyres, it has an extra 31 mm of ground clearance. In the base setting, the SUV has a maximum ground clearance of 206 mm; this reduces progressively as the speed rises and the body can drop by 13 mm at 120 km/h and above. Thus the vehicle can be optimised for driving on rough terrain as well as speeding along the highway with good aerodynamics to help go further.

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

The control strategy for the air suspension has also been revised to meet typical off-road driving requirements, while water crossings can be done up to depths of 300 mm.

The Grabber AT3 tyres are more suited for off-road conditions and can be used in all seasons. However, for drivers who prefer to have tyres more suited for highways, Audi includes another set of summer tyres on 20-inch wheels with the vehicle, so an owner gets 8 tyres with the purchase.

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

Up to 300 kW power, 483 kms range
The powertrain is similar to that in a Q8 advanced 55 e-tron quattro. This means it has a 106 kWh battery pack which can give a claimed range of up to 483 kms. With the all-terrain tyres, the 2 electric motors that generate 300 kW (boost mode and 664 Nm can send the Q8 e-tron to 100 km/h in a claimed 5.9 seconds, while the maximum speed is limited to 200 km/h.

A unique decal package inspired by the RS Q e-tron has been specially designed for the Dakar Edition. Starting with the body colour Mythos Black metallic, the vehicles has a wrap uses purposeful transparencies but does not mask the entire surface, even though all exterior components are treated. The wrapped models are limited to 99 units.

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

On the D-pillar, the special model’s serial number can be seen in frosted lettering, and when the driver’s door opens, the words ‘edition Dakar’ are projected onto the road with LED lights from under the mirrors.

The Q8 e-tron edition Dakar is equipped a storage and luggage compartment package as standard. There is also a standard roof rack, capable of holding up to 40 kgs and accommodating various items.

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

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Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

Typical Audi luxury inside
The exterior may have rugged looks that say the Q8 e-tron is ready for off-road adventures but the typical luxury that Audi offers is still present within. The equipment level is S-Line  and the package includes deeply contoured sports seats upholstered in Dinamica microfibre and artificial leather.

The vehicle also features a multifunction sport leather steering wheel, an elegant black roof lining, stainless steel pedals, with the Audi Sport stitching package in red available as an option. The seatbelts are also trimmed in red to blend in perfectly with the cabin’s sporty feel.

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

The MMI operating system shows information the vehicle’s tilt angle and Audi also offers background images on the MMI display created especially for the edition Dakar. Coordinated with the ambient lighting, the images portray 3 scenes: from desert thunderstorms and tyre tracks to a dune landscape.

Audi Q8 e-tron EV edition Dakar [2024]

Audi range gets two powerful SQ8 e-tron quattro variants

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