2022 Audi A8 Gets Fresh Looks, New Model Exclusive to China

Published on November 2, 2021 in New Models by Gabriel Gélinas

The Audi A8 is getting a facelift for 2022. It will go on sale in Canada next summer and we should find out about pricing and equipment details closer to launch.  

In addition to a cosmetic update to its flagship sedan, Audi has created a new, longer and more luxurious A8L Horch that will be available exclusively to customers in China, which represents nearly 60 percent of all A8 sales globally.

For sure, the Audi A8 has come a long way since its original debut at the 1994 Geneva Motor Show, where it stood out with the company’s first Aluminum Space Frame (ASF). Over the years, the car has served as a platform to introduce new technologies and innovations. The current generation, launched for 2017, is no exception. It’s the one that pioneered the active suspension system with electronic roll stabilization and a front-mounted camera providing key data to adjust damping characteristics in real time.

These technological marvels are now staples of the Audi A8 and its sportier S8 sibling. We should also mention the available semi-autonomous driving assistant, which makes for more relaxed trips on the highway.

Photo: Audi AG

Glamour and Prestige

The refreshed 2022 Audi A8 boasts a redesigned Singleframe grille that features a subtle crossbar and a dramatic interpretation of the traditional mesh design. Underneath is a chrome strip that stretches the full width of the car and goes around the fog lights at each corner.

The headlights have a new look, as well, with the available LED Matrix units incorporating an illuminated four-ring logo. In the rear, the OLED-type taillights offer various, driver-selectable lighting signatures.

For the first time, an S-Line package can be specified. You can recognize this one with a sport front grille reminiscent of that on the S8 model, plus unique seats featuring embossed S-Line logos and available 21-inch alloy wheels. Four new body colours have been added to the mix including several with a matte finish. Also, customers can select among 15 different wheel designs including A8-first black wheels.

Photo: Audi AG

Familiar Powertrains

Audi’s so-called Relaxation Seats in the rear continue to be offered in the long-wheelbase A8L. They have a reclining seatback and folding ottoman in addition to a massage function.

Also carried over for 2022 are both powertrain options including a twin-turbocharged V8 and a V6-based plug-in hybrid variant. We expect a refreshed and updated S8 to debut soon with a more striking exterior and a 536-horsepower beast under the hood, not to mention an active suspension and quattro sport rear differential as standard equipment.

Photo: Audi AG

A8L Horch Made for China

As mentioned up top, China is the biggest market for the Audi A8. Designers therefore decided to introduce a special model called A8L Horch, named after the famous German brand that merged with others to form Auto Union in 1932.

The A8L Horch is 13 centimetres longer and impresses with a larger panoramic roof, a dozen vertical chrome bars on the grille, unique alloy wheels and model-specific badging.

Photo: Audi AG

It’s all very glitzy, no doubt about it, but Audi says the A8L Horch could eventually be sold in markets outside of China if there is enough demand.

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