The project has reportedly been given a green light, with the Q8 set to sit above the existing Q7 - competing with the next tier of luxury SUVs like Land Rover’s new Range Rover flagship.
The Touareg/Cayenne/Q7 cousins currently use a unique PL71 architecture, but the future MLB platform looks set to be adapted to cover the larger SUV range, in addition to the current A and Q models it underpins.
This new platform is expected to employ greater levels of aluminium in its construction, and the Q8 will reportedly weigh some 300kg less than the current Q7 (which starts at 2270kg).
A Q8 could also help build the case for a production version of the recent Bentley EXP 9 F SUV concept, as a top-tier Audi platform-cousin could use some of its Bentley-grade gadgets and comfort items.
Development of the Q8 is reportedly beyond the customer clinic stage, with a projected sales volume of up to 25,000 units.
A launch date is still some way off however, with production not likely before 2017.