The upcoming Audi Q8 and Porsche Cayenne coupé are just two of the seven uniquely styled SUVs from five different brands that the Volkswagen Group is planning to spin off the new MLB platform Audi is engineering.
While the new Q8 will lead a model push from within Audi which will see the production of 11 new cars by 2020, the Cayenne will spearhead a similar attack for Porsche by expanding its current lineup.
While the new Audi A7 will be the first model seen from the new assault when it goes on sale later this year, there are six others also in the pipeline.
Chief among the changes for the Q7 will be the shedding of more than 300kg thanks to the lighter MLB platform. The result will be improved agility and economy. A plug-in hybrid variant will be offered. Expect a less aggressive look, too.
The third-generation Cayenne is in development, even though a heavily facelifted current model isn’t due until later this summer. Expect an edgier, less rounded look for the next-gen Cayenne, inspired in part by the 918 Spyder.
The Falcon, as Bentley’s SUV is known internally, is due in 2017 and has been described as a “true thoroughbred” by bosses. It will mix sporting and luxurious traits with a 200mph top speed and refinement to better a Range Rover.
Volkswagen Touareg - 2017
A revised Touareg was seen earlier this month in Beijing. The next-generation model will again be the VW Group’s price-leading big SUV, but it will get a more luxurious cabin, a lighter chassis and modern, fuel-efficient engines.
Audi's new range-topping crossover SUV will rival the likes of the BMW X6 and Range Rover Sport when it goes on sale. A development programme is currently under way, with the aim of getting the Q8 on sale within three years. It'll lead an upmarket push from Audi, and sit in the firm's expanded Q-badged SUV line-up.
Although at an early stage at the moment, design proposals for Porsche's new five-door liftback SUV are already close to being signed off. Tentatively due on sale in 2018, the model should come as part of the third-generation Cayenne line-up and will act as a rival to the likes of the upcoming Mercedes-Benz MLC.