LA Auto Show 2019

600-horsepower 2020 Audi RS Q8 debuts as solution to sluggish Q8

Audi has upped the horsepower, torque, and braking power in this new model compared to the 2020 Audi Q8.

Photo courtesy of Audi AG

Get the family where they're going in a hurry and in style with the new 2020 Audi RS Q8. The model is a supped up version of the Audi Q8, which is commonly knocked for its less than enthusiastic powertrain.

At the front of the new SUV is an octagonal Singleframe and the RS-specific radiator grille. Gloss black front air inlets and a matte aluminum blade up the design ante. The model has wide wheel arches, which boost its muscular appearance. An RS roof-edge spoiler sits at the top rear of the Audi.

2020 Audi RS Q8 rear back tailgate spoiler Audi has added a spoiler to the rear of the RS Q8.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

Under its hood is a biturbo 4.0-liter V8 engine thatacheives 600 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque, which should be enough to satisfy the Q8's critics. The engine is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. It gets from zero to 62 mph in a quick 3.8 seconds and has a top speed of 189.5 mph when equipped with the available RS ceramic brakes.

Audi only offers the RS Q8 with all-wheel drive. Torque vectoring technology gives each wheel the right amount of torque at the appropriate time, working to keep the SUV stable on the road.

2020 Audi RS Q8 front face lights grille logo badging A host of technology keeps the RS Q8 planted through corners.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

The RS Q8 come equipped with an adaptive air suspension with controlled damping to make the ride comfortable on or off road. Electromechanical active roll stabilization keeps the SUV planted through corners. There's also variable ground clearance, allowing for more friendly navigation in tough terrain and a better aerodynamics at high speed.

2020 Audi RS Q8 interior black leather MMI touch screen virtual cockpit The interior of the RS Q8 is very similar to the Q8.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

Each RS Q8 gives drivers the choice of seven drive modes: comfort, auto, dynamic, allroad, offroad and the individually configurable RS-specific modes RS1 and RS2, which can be activated directly via the "'RS-MODE'" button on the steering wheel. The modes change the SUV's engine and transmission management, power steering, the air suspension, all-wheel steering and engine sound.

The cabin of the RS Q8 is much like that of the Q8 and that's a good thing. Drivers will find special RS displays inside Audi's virtual cockpit and MMI display.

2020 Audi RS Q8 rear seat A three-seater bend is standard.Photo courtesy of Audi AG

A sliding rear three-seat bench is standard. The cargo area has up to 60.7 cubic feet of space, depending on seating configuration.

The first Audi RS Q8 is expected to arrive in the U.S. in 2020. Pricing will be announced closer to its on-sale date. The Q8 starts around $69,000 and potential buyers should expect the RS variant to be priced considerably higher.

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Updated compact SUV

2022 Nissan Rogue gets new VC Turbo engine

The Rogue was fully redesigned last year.

Nissan

Nissan refreshed its best-selling vehicle, the Rogue SUV, in 2021 with a grown-up new look and plenty of new tech. Changes the year after a major overhaul are usually minor, but for 2022 Nissan's giving the Rogue a new powertrain. A brand-new 1.5-liter variable compression (VC) Turbo engine is on board, producing 201 horsepower and 225 pound-feet of torque.

2022 Nissan Rogue The new VC engine can change its compression to adapt to driving conditions.Nissan

Power is up 11 percent and torque is up a staggering 24 percent with the new power plant. The variable compression engine is capable of adapting to changing driving conditions. When the driver needs more power, the engine shifts to higher compression, which delivers better acceleration at the expense of fuel economy. When efficiency is best, the engine changes its compression again. The VC engines made their debut in 2019 in both the Infiniti QX50 and Nissan Altima. It's trick engine technology, but it doesn't always deliver on its promise of efficiency gains. Nissan's continuously variable transmission is still in place, though it has been improved with 17 percent wider gear ratio coverage and 32 percent lower friction. The automaker says it helps deliver better acceleration and fuel economy.

2022 Nissan Rogue Top Rogue trims get upscale finishes and a handsome cabin.Nissan

Pricing for the 2022 Rogue S FWD starts at $27,875, including a $1,175 destination charge. Adding all-wheel drive pushes the price by $1,500. Nissan offers three packages for the SUV as well, including a $2,660 SV Premium Package, a $1,320 SL Premium Package, and a $400 10.8-inch head-up display for the top Platinum trim.

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The CX-50 features body cladding and rugged styling.

Mazda

Mazda's got a busy 2021 and 2022 as it gears up to release several new vehicles. The first is almost here, and today the automaker shared preliminary details. The CX-50 is an all-new SUV that shares a platform with the Mazda 3 and CX-30.

2023 Mazda CX-50 Production begins in January 2022. Mazda

At first, the CX-50 will be offered with Mazda's 2.5-liter four-cylinder engines, one of which is turbocharged, but electrified powertrain options will join the lineup down the road, including a traditional hybrid. Both gas engines come with a six-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel drive. A new drive mode select system is also standard that allows the driver to change the CX-50's behavior to match road and driving conditions such as towing and off-roading.

2023 Mazda CX-50 A new drive mode selection feature allows the driver to change vehicle behavior. Mazda

The new SUV's styling is a departure from the norm for Mazda, whose typical designs are sleek and elegant but far from rugged. That changes with the CX-50. Mazda installed beefy fender flares, body cladding, and a chunky front bumper that make the SUV look ready for the trail. New colors debut with the CX-50 as well, including Zircon Sand for the exterior and a terracotta upholstery option for the interior. The SUV will be the first Mazda to be offered with a panoramic sunroof.

2023 Mazda CX-50 New color schemes are available for both the interior and exterior. Mazda

We don't have full pricing or options details yet, but Mazda says that the CX-50 will be built at the facility in Huntsville, Alabama that it shares with Toyota. Production is scheduled for January 2022.

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