Audi Reveals The Next Generation R8

Audi has just revealed the updated R8. Set to be available this summer, the second generation of Audi’s sports car will face fierce competition.

In the next few years Ford will be releasing the 2017 GT and Acura will be releasing its much anticipated NSX. It seems Audi has beaten both to the punch by bringing a 600+ hp supercar to the market first.

The new R8 has been rethought from the ground up. That said it will still make use of that glorious V-10.

The 5.2L FSi will be available in two forms; one delivering 540 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque which is enough to propel the R8 from 0-100 km in just 3.5 seconds and gives a top speed of 323 km/h. The other version, in the R8 Plus, develops 610 hp and 413 ln-ft of torque. This one will take the R8 from a standstill to 100 km/h in just 3.2 seconds, and on to a top speed of 330 km/h.

Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Board Member for Technical Development at Audi said, “With the new Audi R8, our engineers are bringing accumulated racing expertise from the race track onto the road. No other model of ours evokes more dynamic emotion. The new R8 V10 plus is therefore the most powerful and fastest series-production Audi of all time.”

The naturally aspirated V-10 makes use of Direct Injection and Cylinder-On-Demand (COD). The COD technology will shut off the spark and fuel to one of the two cylinder banks. As a result, they have developed a supercar that returns full-size sedan fuel economy, during relaxed use obviously. The 540 hp variant has an estimated combined fuel economy rating of 11.8L/100 km; the 610 hp version receives a rating of 12.4L/100 km.

The 7-speed S-tronic transmission and new Quattro-all-wheel-drive system deliver the immense power in varying amounts to all 4 wheels depending on conditions and mode selected.

Despite having more equipment the new R8 has lost weight to the tune of 50 kilograms (110.2 lbs).

The new R8 comes with 19” wheels and for the first time, Audi is offering 20” wheels as an option 

The R8 Plus model receives high-end carbon fiber ceramic brakes if you have the 20” wheels (optional for the standard R8).

The exterior has changed also.

Along with the standard LED lighting, the new R8 has the option of Audi’s Laser high-beams. This system doubles the range of the lights to 600 meters (1968.5 ft).

The interior has been designed to make the driver feel like they are driving a race car. Everything is oriented to the driver. The steering wheel features the start/stop, performance mode, sports exhaust control and Audi-drive select buttons. Also, a rotary wheel selects a dry, wet or snow setting.

All of the gauges and driver information are housed in the free-standing 12.3” display, part of what Audi calls the virtual cockpit. The system replaces the MMI from the previous model and allows the driver to toggle between various display modes, or a navigation map and will allow the driver customize the instrument cluster.

All of this can be accomplished without taking their hands off the steering wheel. The touch wheel and buttons in the centre console can also be used to perform these tasks.

The R8 has a WiFi hotspot that uses an LTE (Long Term Evolution) network. Optional is a 500 watt Bang & Olufsen stereo and the Audi phone box which grants easy cell phone integration.

Audi has done a fantastic job of reworking an incredible car. All that remains to be seen is whether they have done enough to hold off the soon to be released competition.

Which would you choose: Audi R8, Ford GT, or Acura NSX? Let us know.

Consumer Expert Robert Nichols

Robert is a lifelong car nut. He works as a Technician with 16 years experience and has multiple trade licenses. Having worked on vehicles ranging from Porsche's, fire trucks, trains, and industrial/mining equipment, he has a varied and broad knowledge base to draw on. But his favorite thing to do is drive, be it on two or four wheels.