As a former publisher of Style & Design magazine, Kris Menon said words, photos and design are his favorite things. He moved from New York City back to the Toronto area 14 years ago and started Your Brand Integrated Marketing Communications Inc., an award-winning agency.
Menon is a big Audi fan. Over the past two decades, it has had several models, including the A4, Q5 and SQ5. The Etobicoke native drives to commute to meetings at his office in Liberty Village and to take care of his parents, who live in North York.
His role as a carer was one of the factors in his recent decision to buy a 2021 Audi RS Q8. Since the vehicle was not available in the Toronto area, Menon ordered his online from Audi Anjou in Montreal. He tells us why he loves his vehicle.
“I have loved Audis since I was young. It has always appealed to me,” said Menon. “I love words, design and art. I collect a lot of Canadian art, especially from the modern Quebec scene. Some of my favorite artists play with different textures, colors and use mixed media.
“I’ve always felt that Audi was focused on design – their vehicles feel like works of art. The pattern Audi used on the front grill is unreal. The sleekness of the side mirrors, the notches on the panels, it’s very thoughtful. It’s something I like to watch.
“I remember when the R8 (the company’s high-performance coupé) came out in 2006. It was the car of my dreams. I just loved the design,” he said. “My RS Q8 is the closest thing to owning an R8. It’s like an R8 in terms of styling, horsepower, speed and all that sort of thing. It’s incredible sleek and has all those elements of a beautiful sports car, but it also has the practical advantage of being good in the winter, carrying things and taking people along, like my parents.
“The vehicle is a great mix of form and function. It’s super safe, very intuitive and yet it’s a work of art,” Menon says. “Eventually I think I will switch to electric – I think we will all switch to electric someday.
“I thought the RS Q8 would be the perfect last gas car for me. It’s funny because it really came down to an Audi e-Tron (an electric vehicle) or this car when I made my decision.”
A closer look Audi RS Q8 2021
A sleek look
“I love the design,” Menon said of his RS Q8. “It’s much slimmer and lower to the ground than my previous Audi. I find it cooler to drive and much nicer to look at. I think it’s because I’m such a fan of the brand.
“There’s the cockpit design, which, compared to pretty much anything I’ve ever driven, is very different,” said Manon. “The cockpit is really built for a driver. It’s also made so that you can really stay focused on the road. It has a heads up display. The touchscreen is very intuitive with HVAC control, heating and cooling. There are controls on the steering wheel for the radio and you can enter RS Performance mode by just pressing a button on the right.
Focus and handling
“I’m quite a conservative driver and I’m a big believer in keeping your focus on the road, so the car gives you all the tools to be really focused and not to play with toys,” Menon said. “It drives like a sports car. I have never driven such an SUV. It steers like a much smaller car when cornering, when merging on the highway and over long distances.”
- body styleFour-door hatchback
- Drive method:Four wheel drive
- Engine4.0-liter turbocharged Quattro, 591 hp; 590 lb-ft. Couple
- Fuel consumption (city/highway)18.1/12.4 liters per 100 kilometres
- PriceFrom $115,595 (US)
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