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The Q8’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Atlas Cross Sport doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
Both the Q8 and Atlas Cross Sport have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Q8 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Atlas Cross Sport’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Q8. But it costs extra on the Atlas Cross Sport.
A passive infrared night vision system optional on the Q8 Prestige helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The Atlas Cross Sport doesn’t offer a night vision system.
Both the Q8 and the Atlas Cross Sport have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.
The Audi Q8 weighs 594 to 902 pounds more than the Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Q8 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Atlas Cross Sport has not been tested, yet.
The Q8’s corrosion warranty is 5 years and unlimited miles longer than the Atlas Cross Sport’s (12/unlimited vs. 7/100,000).
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Audi vehicles are better in initial quality than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 22nd in initial quality. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 25th.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 12th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 13 places higher in reliability than Volkswagen.
The Q8’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid produces 100 more horsepower (335 vs. 235) and 111 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 258) than the Atlas Cross Sport’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder. The Q8’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid produces 59 more horsepower (335 vs. 276) and 103 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 266) than the Atlas Cross Sport’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6.
Regenerative brakes improve the Q8’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Atlas Cross Sport doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
The Q8 has 3.9 gallons more fuel capacity than the Atlas Cross Sport (22.5 vs. 18.6 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
For better stopping power the Q8’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Atlas Cross Sport:
Atlas Cross Sport
For better traction, the Q8 has larger standard tires than the Atlas Cross Sport (275/50R20 vs. 245/60R18). The Q8’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Atlas Cross Sport (285/45R21 vs. 265/45R21).
The Q8’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Atlas Cross Sport’s standard 60 series tires. The Q8’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Atlas Cross Sport R-Line’s 45 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Q8 has standard 20-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the Atlas Cross Sport. The Q8’s optional 22-inch wheels are larger than the 21-inch wheels on the Atlas Cross Sport R-Line.
The Q8 has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Q8 flat and controlled during cornering. The Atlas Cross Sport’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.
The Q8 has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Atlas Cross Sport’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
The Q8’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Atlas Cross Sport’s (7700 vs. 2000 pounds).
The engine in the Q8 is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the Atlas Cross Sport. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Volkswagen. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 26% lower rating, Volkswagen is ranked 18th.
Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Atlas Cross Sport SEL, the Q8 offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.
The Q8’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Atlas Cross Sport doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The Q8 Prestige has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Atlas Cross Sport doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
If the windows are left open on the Q8 Premium Plus/Prestige the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Atlas Cross Sport can’t use the remote to operate the windows.
A manual rear sunshade is optional in the Q8 and power rear side window sunshades are standard in the Q8 Prestige to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Atlas Cross Sport doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.
The Q8’s standard rear view mirror and optional side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Atlas Cross Sport has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
The Q8 Prestige offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Atlas Cross Sport.
The Q8 has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Atlas Cross Sport SE/SEL.
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