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Abt RSQ8 Signature Edition (2022): 800hp, limited to 96

Audi’s Q8 in the 600hp RS version approaches the Lamborghini Urus. With the RSQ8 in the limited Signature Edition, Abt surpasses the extrovert Italian by 30 per cent thanks to 800 HP, but clearly undermines it in terms of number of pieces: there should be only 96 units. We could drive one.

The upper limit of the miniseries is an allusion to the founding year of Abt, 1896. Ten years after Carl Benz’s automobile patent, the company in Allgäu still had nothing to do with cars, but with locomotion. : Johann Abt founded his workshop horse at that time. And his descendants have now put a lot of power into Audi’s coupe SUV: the twin-turbo V8 now delivers 800hp and up to 1,000Nm on all four wheels. The car is known for the 2021 RS6 Signature Edition, presented by Abt for the company’s 125th anniversary. As with the debut with the “Signature Edition” addition, each copy of the second limited special series also carries a time capsule: a fragment of the Johann Abt winner’s first trophy is emblazoned under the glass on the center console Earned Grass Racecourse in Kempten . After that, the family and the company kept the trophy. They now give each of the 96 RSQ8s a small piece of the more than 300 motorsport wins that Abt Sportsline has achieved on tracks around the world.


Forge of Johann Abt


Abt

200 hp more and lots of carbon

An SUV weighing around 2.4 tonnes may not be suitable for the track, but sporty driving performance is not lacking thanks to the extensive engine overhaul: specially developed intercoolers and turbochargers as well as a separate control unit (AEC – Abt Engine Control) guarantee 200 hp more than Ingolstadt’s not-so-weak starting product. Electronic lowering (Abt Level Control) is intended to help intensify contact with the road and, if necessary, make the SUV look like a low-flyer.Acoustically, the 800hp stands out with a silenced exhaust system stainless steel and four tailpipes with a diameter of 10.5 cm.


Abt Audi RSQ8 Signature Edition

Abt

The large tailpipes release a beautiful V8 soundscape.

As with the Johann Abt Signature Edition of the RS6, the RSQ8 also has an extensive aerodynamic kit. Abt calls the new surface structure “Signature Carbon Bold”. For example, it adorns the front lip, front slats, front apron inserts including air intake grille, front grille attachment, fender flares, mirror hood attachments, lens mounting strips doors, rear panel set, accessory rear apron and rear spoiler. The Algäu, on the other hand, retains the ventilation of the front wheel arch and the rear spoiler lip in “carbon black gloss”. The forged wheels of all Signature Editions are not found in the regular Abt collection. The “Signature Edition 23 Gloss Black” wheels are – noun es omen – a whopping 23 inches in size and have a 295/35 rubber.


Carbon also in the interior

Abt Audi RSQ8 Signature Edition

Patrizio Otto

Dominant color inside: black.

Inside, few buyers expect a lot from Alcantara, diamond quilting on the seats, door panels and floor and trunk mats. Abt puts the “Signature Carbon Bold” on the outside of the steering wheel lock and decorative trim. An Abt logo on the headrests and “RSQ8 Signature Edition” embroidered on the seats show passengers what kind of car they are getting into.


And how does the RSQ8 with 800 hp drive?

According to Abt, the 5-meter piece sprints from 0 to 100 km / h in 3.2 seconds, 0.6 seconds faster than the stock RSQ8. When you unleash 1,000 Newton meters on all-wheel drive for the first time via launch control and the sheer force of the forced-ventilation four-liter unit pushes you into your seat, believe it. After a good 250 km / h, reachable quickly even on short free motorway sections, Abt accepts that the propulsion ends only at 315 km / h. Acceleration seems strangely decoupled from the speed already achieved.


Abt Audi RSQ8 Signature Edition

Patrizio Otto

Wacky or relieved? The Abt RSQ8 accelerates to 100 km / h in 3.2 seconds.

What is most noticeable on country roads: the powerful turbochargers need a few tenths of a second before they can put the combustion chambers under pressure. The engine always responds to quick, powerful movements of the accelerator pedal with a short breath. The brute force that follows seems all the more impressive, but the powerful internal combustion engine remains a bit far from the spontaneity of the electric drives, which have recently attracted attention with such high performance and torque values, despite the automatic transmissions being extremely fast and smooth refills. Acoustically, this is a great pleasure, Abt did not exaggerate the noise: even in the Sport position, the V8 sounds so discreet but well composed from the front that even outsiders need not feel disturbed.


A lot of weight on paper only

In terms of weight, the SUV coupe comes close enough to electric cars: even without a driver it weighs a whopping 2.3 tons. Surprisingly little of this is felt even on country roads: All-wheel steering and roll stabilization help steer the approximately 2.2-meter-wide piece almost playfully even around narrower spokes, without the high-seated driver stepping away. you lean too sideways and contact with the road remains intimately with bumpy bumps, suspension comfort even in the sporty stance of the Audi Drive Select flawless. Together with the ample space, the RSQ8 is proposed as a comfortable touring car.

Abt Audi RSQ8 Signature Edition

Patrizio Otto

Despite the 11 square meters of traffic area, the RSQ8 is relatively maneuverable and agile.

In terms of CO2, however, this is a disaster: even the short test drive gives the idea that the V8 will empty the tank as quickly as a powerful electric car drains the battery when possible driving performance is required accordingly. . Of course, power charging is much faster with the RSQ8. Abt customers should have only limited problems with costs: they had to prove their solvency at the time of purchase. Abt charges € 129,900 for the conversion of an RSQ8 into a Signature Edition and € 316,480 for the entire vehicle.


Conclusion

There is not much to complain about the Abt RSQ8 Signature Edition: it is very spacious, comfortable and yet relatively agile, sits well and drives extremely fast. Only the response of the powerful twin-turbo V8 does not quite reach the level of ultra-powerful electric cars. The combustion SUV puts it in your pocket when it comes to the length of refueling stops, although not necessarily in terms of range itself. On fast travel, however, it shouldn’t be beaten. What about the carbon footprint? Abt casually contrasts with the limitation to 96 units: in 2021, for example, Porsche sold 41,200 more cars from the electric Taycan.

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