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2025 Audi Q8 RS and Q8 RS Performance: Unleashed powerful SUVs

One of these cars holds the record as the fastest SUV at the Nürburgring.

2025 Audi Q8 RS and Audi Q8 RS Performance parked white concrete surface with white walls.
Audi unleashed its two most powerful gas-powered SUVs, the 2025 Audi Q8 RS and Q8 RS Performance. Adding two additional layers of potency to the already mighty Audi Q8, the RS variants offer choice to those willing to pay the extra price. The Q8 RS Performance is not a track car but see below for its record-setting run at one of the most famous circuits in the world.

Why the Audi Q8 RS and Q8 RS Performance matter

2025 Audi Q8 RS parked on a shallow infinity pool with mountains in the background.
The Audi Q8 RS and the new-for-2025 Q8 RS Performance are both products of Audi Sport GmbH. The Audi Sport division is responsible for high-performance road cars, custom vehicles, and most motorsports. Audi Formula Racing GmbH handles the Audi Formula One team, which will begin competing in 2026.

The Audi brand’s niche among the VW Group car brands ranges from upscaled-VWs to luxury performance, although not on the levels of the group’s Bentley or Bugatti brands. The Q8 RS and Q8 RS Performance are the category-toppers for Audi’s powerful family road car line.

Defining features of the Audi Q8 RS and Q8 RS Performance

2025 Audi Q8 RS Performance parked on a helicopter landing pad with mountains in the background.
Different twin-turbocharged V-8 engines power the Q8 RS and RS Performance. In the RS, the motor creates 592 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque. All that power translates to 0-to-62.2 mph acceleration in 3.8 seconds. The RS has an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph, although with options, the maximum speed can be set to 174 mph or even 189 mph.

The Q8 RS Performance’s engine produces 631 hp and 626 lb-ft of torque. Accelerating from 0-to-62.2 mph takes just 3.6 seconds, and the top speed is 189 mph. The company says the RS Performance engine is the most powerful production engine in Audi Sports’ history, with less back pressure and a lighter exhaust system than the Rs engine.

The 2025 Audi Q8 RS Performance is the fastest SUV on the Nürburgring’s Nordschleife. Audi racing and development driver Frank Stippler set a time of 7:36:698 minutes on the 12.94-mile circuit, more than two seconds faster than the previous record-holder.

The Audi Q8 RS and Q8 RS Performance have many other significant performance features beyond the scope of this article. U.S. pricing is unavailable, but customers can order the RS and RS Performance beginning June 27. In Europe, the 2025 Audi Q8 RS starts at 141,900 euros, and the RS Q8 Performance starts at 155,700 euros.

Bruce Brown
Digital Trends Contributing Editor Bruce Brown is a member of the Smart Homes and Cars teams. He also writes technology news…
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