All posts in “audi r8 v10”

Best of the Current Audi Model Lineup

The four-ringed German marque has really come into its own in the last decade, with Audi now setting a benchmark for what a luxury sports car – at an accessible price – can and should be. These days they’re propagating this philosophy with the volume cranked all the way up, producing a comprehensive range of SUVs, sedans, estates and supercars.

While the most significant updates for the 2021 model year have been reserved for their entry-level offerings, their top performance vehicles (basically anything with an ‘R’ or ‘RS’ in the name) are also bearing some good news. For 2021, we’ve seen the debut of the RS6 Avant, RS7 and RS Q8 for North American markets. Then of course, there’s the all new e-tron GT – Audi’s high-performance grand-touring EV saloon – which looks to shake up a playing field currently dominated by the Porsche Taycan and Tesla Model S.

The Audi R8 continues to retain its position as ‘poster boy’ atop the performance hierarchy, even though the old-guard has been rumored for retirement no later than 2023. In celebration or in spite of this (depending on how you look at it) Audi has announced that the R8 will be permanently available with a rear-wheel drive base model going forward. In the past, the rear-wheel drive R8 – which first featured briefly in 2018 as the R8 RWS – was a limited-run version of the otherwise exclusively all-wheel drive car.

With the company changing its focus to EV production and technologies, it will be interesting to see how things play out for Audi over the next decade. Will Audi be taking the lead on this next generation of transportation? How will their philosophies and definition of an “engaging driving experience” be affected by this transformation?

Here are the best brand new Audi models you can purchase today.

Audi R8 RWD

Audi R8 RWD

This has to be the best car that Audi currently has in its model range. Now a standard, instead of a one-off offering, the rear-wheel drive version of Audi’s famous R8 supercar is wonderful for so many reasons. Not only does it provide a notably lower price of entry into ownership of a brand new R8, it also brings about the puristic thrills that its heavier and more expensive all-wheel-drive counterpart can’t. Yeah, it’s not going to be as quick as the Performance model, but it sure as heck is going to be more fun to drive. Touted as a proper sports car engine, its V10 makes peak power at 7,800 rpm and smoothly revs all the way to a euphoric 8,700 rpm redline, all the while providing a delightful symphony of sound via its howling engine note.

Audi RS 6 Avant

2021 Audi RS6 Avant

Audi is reinvigorating the currently stale hot-hatch segment, with its greatly anticipated RS 6 Avant finally making its way over to the western hemisphere. Featuring a mild-hybrid powertrain, this is not your average station wagon. The aggressive and attractive RS-specific bodywork makes a loud statement that this is no ordinary grocery getter. Ok, so it’s not exactly cheap either – with a base price north of 6 figures – but it’s easily my favorite Audi, and is the best car in the lineup that is not an R8. At the heart of the car is a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V8 engine that puts out a whopping 591 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. The results are impressive, too – the car can sprint from 0-62 mph in just 3.6 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 155 mph.

Audi e-tron GT

Audi e-tron GT

The 2022 Audi e-tron GT is the four-ringed company’s first entrant into the high-performance EV weight class. It looks to shake up a playing field which includes the likes of the Tesla Model S and Porsche Taycan, the latter of which it shares many of the same underpinnings. This isn’t the marque’s first EV model, as it joins up with a roster currently occupied by Audi’s e-tron SUVs. However, the e-tron GT does have the distinction of becoming the first fully-electric car to don the company’s legendary RS badge via the highest and most expensive trim level currently on offer. The base model e-tron GT predictably comes with less of the go-faster, stop-harder and look-sexier ingredients that are typically reserved for an RS model, but it does share the same 93.4 kWh battery with its more glamorous stablemate.

Audi RS Q8

Audi RS Q8

The Audi RS Q8 is the fastest version of the marque’s Q8 series of sport utility vehicles. It’s also the fastest dang SUV around the Nordschleife too – not too shabby for something you can ferry the kids to-and-from school in, and it will definitely earn you bragging rights amongst all the parents in the neighborhood. The model gets a high-performance 4.0L twin-turbocharged V8 engine, which punches out exotic-level performance figures – namely, 592 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. That’s quite a lot of power for just about anything out there, never mind something that seats 5 adults comfortably. For 2021, the RS Q8 gets only one change; it now comes standard with a built-in toll-road-payment transmission feature.

Audi RS 7

Audi RS 7

The Audi RS 7 Sportback is what you get when you take the RS 6 Avant’s engine, then place it in a sleeker Audi Sportback frame. The resulting Audi RS 7 Sportback is an aggressive and beautiful car, with performance credentials to back up its bold appearance. This strikingly athletic, yet elegant, four-door sports car is the perfect blend of practicality and performance. At the heart of the car is a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V8 engine with a mild-hybrid system, which puts out a whopping 591 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. The results are impressive, too – the car can sprint from 0-62 mph in just 3.6 seconds, on its way to a top speed of 155 mph. If you’re looking for an ideal luxury-performance sports sedan, and aren’t quite ready to make the leap over to an EV, this would be the one to get.

Best V10 Engines Ever Produced

Most people probably don’t know it, but V10 engines are kind of the awkward middle child within the high-performance engine family. They are often overlooked for their smaller, more compact, and just-as-spirited V8 siblings, yet still somehow manage to cut a notably less brawny figure next to the larger V12 motors. In terms of outcomes, this is probably why even the most hardcore car enthusiasts will have a difficult time recalling more V10 production cars than you can count on one hand – there are fewer of them than you’re likely thinking, and perhaps there should be more of them for this reason, but that’s for a different discussion.

Interestingly, it’s the Volkswagen Group which currently has the monopoly on supplying this particular engine, via Lamborghini and Audi production models which are under the corporation’s umbrella (plus its namesake Volkswagen Touareg V10 TDI – more on that below). Meanwhile, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Ferrari would at the very least have delved into the art of the V10 -which they did, though only to produce such engines for Formula 1 cars from 1996 to 2005.

Quantifiably speaking, yes, there are fewer V10s out there than the other engines most closely related to it. However, each V10 engine mentioned on this list is undeniably iconic and rightfully potent, particularly when it comes to panache. So while this middle child might not always steal the spotlight, nor hog affection that goes to its siblings, it is in no way lacking any of the talent in its DNA.

Here’s the shortlist of 10 such engines, which we have curated:

Lamborghini / Audi 5.2L V10

Lamborghini / Audi 5.2L V10 Engine

Ever since 2008 – when the refreshed Lamborghini Gallardo LP 560-4 was released – all V10 engines used in the Lamborghini line-up have been based on the 5.2L architecture. This has carried over to the Gallardo’s successor – the Lamborghini Huracán – with each and every one of its models having been fitted with the aforementioned power plant, up to this point. In the current stage of its evolution, the 5.2L naturally-aspirated V10 is mechanically identical to Audi’s version of the engine (which uses ‘Fuel Stratified Injection) and is seen in Audi’s own R8 supercar; however, power outputs vary depending on the trim levels of the respective models.

Audi 5.0L V10 Biturbo

Audi 5.0L V10 Biturbo Engine

The sharing of tech (and a healthily-stocked pantry of engine parts) between Lamborghini and Audi spans back more than a decade now, and the engine used in the C6-generation Audi RS 6 has to go down as one of the best collaborations to date. Derived from the outgoing 5.0L naturally-aspirated V10 unit from the Lamborghini Gallardo, the motor in the RS 6 was repurposed with a pair of turbochargers. This allowed the super-wagon to produce 571 hp and 478 lb-ft of torque, on its way to becoming Audi’s most powerful car ever, in 2010. While it was handily more powerful than its competition – the BMW M5 and Mercedes-AMG E63 – it also cost quite a bit more (almost double, after conversion) which is likely the reason why it didn’t reach US shores.

Audi 5.2L V10 FSI 40V

Audi 5.2L V10 FSI 40V Engine

Unlike the C6-generation Audi RS 6, the 5.0L unit used in the third-generation Audi S6 is less related to a Lamborghini equivalent and has more in common with an Audi 4.2L V8. For starters, it has a longer stroke and wider bore than the Lamborghini 5.0L V10 seen in the Gallardo, making for the better low-end power which is more befitting of the larger sedan. When considering the internals, the 5.2L motor in the S6 more closely resembles the aforementioned 4.2L V8 which was once used in the B6-generation Audi S4. Thanks to the tweaks mentioned above, this engine was good for 444 hp in the four-ringed luxury sports sedan.

Lamborghini Huracán Performanté 5.2L V10

Lamborghini Huracán Performanté 5.2L V10 Engine

The 5.2L naturally-aspirated V10 power plant we’ve been speaking so much about in this list is at the peak of its evolution via the current Lamborghini Huracán Performanté. In this configuration, the engine produces 640 hp @ 8,000 rpm and 443 lb-ft of torque @ 6,500 rpm; this makes the supercar good for 0-100 km/h in 3.1 seconds and a blistering top speed of 325 km/h, all without the assistance of any type of forced induction. Augmented with the greatest technologies available today, the motor produces its power more efficiently than ever before as well, with more than 70% of its torque already available as early as 1,000 rpm.

Dodge Viper ACR 8.4L V10

Dodge Viper ACR 8.4L V10 Engine

Even if the Dodge Hellcat is hogging all the headlines these days, there’s always something you have to admire about the lunacy of a naturally-aspirated 8.4L V10 engine. No, the Dodge Viper doesn’t do subtlety very well. Yes, it does happen to fall under the ‘Old Testament’ definition of “awesome”. With 640 hp and 600 lb-ft of torque being produced from that colossus of an all-aluminum engine, the Viper has the exhaust note of a semi-dormant volcano. It would make absolutely no sense at all if it wasn’t just so damn fast. Variants such as the SRT-10 and ACR-X took the road-going version of the car to the next level, with the latter being a turn-key, non-street legal race car that participates in Viper racing leagues around the world.

Lexus LFA 4.8L V10 (1LR-GUE)

Lexus LFA 4.8L V10 (1LR-GUE) Engine

Many regard the Lexus LFA as one of the best supercars ever made. Lexus only made 500 units, and I assumed those 500 sold out quickly. I was wrong. Despite the fact that Lexus hasn’t produced the LFA since 2012, there are still seven brand new LFA supercars for sale in the US, according to Carscoops. With all that said, the LFA came with one of the best V10 engines ever produced by a Japanese automaker. The 4.8L naturally-aspirated V10 – dubbed 1LR-GUE – made 552 hp and 352 lb-ft of torque. Developed in collaboration with Yamaha, it was a free-revving engine with an exhaust note that is truly unlike any other on the planet. As the sole representative from Japan, the 1LR-GUE is certainly one for the ages.

Porsche Carrera GT 5.7L V10 (980/01)

Porsche Carrera GT 5.7L V10 (980/01) Engine

What makes the Porsche Carrera GT engine so special is that it is technically a race car engine. Not in that loosely-based sense – as is often used as a gimmick by salespeople – but in the true sense of the word. In the late 1990s, Porsche engineers in Zuffenhausen were assigned the task of developing a naturally-aspirated V10 concept engine, which was to later be used in a race car for the infamous 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race. Sadly, the completion of that race car never came to fruition, but the efforts of the engine builders would not go to waste.

Porsche decided to adapt the engine for use in the Carrera GT and took the necessary steps to not only refine it in order to satisfy production car protocols but also managed to make it a more powerful version than the original unit. The result is a 5.7L naturally-aspirated V10 engine, which produces 612 hp @ 8,000 rpm and 435 lb-ft of torque @ 5,750 rpm. This allowed the Carrera GT to accelerate from 0-60 mph in 3.8 seconds and 0-100 mph in 6.9 seconds, with a top speed of 205 mph.

BMW M5 V10 (S85)

BMW M5 V10 (S85) Engine

Released in mid-2005, the E60 M5 sedan featured a high-revving and ultra-powerful V10 engine, which was the only one of its kind in a series-production car at that moment in time (while also being the marque’s most powerful production car engine ever made). The 5.0L naturally-aspirated unit shared more than just the same number of cylinders as the Formula 1 engine that powered the BMW Williams F1 team. Technology forged in the heat of motorsport had enhanced the processes and components used in creating this new powerhouse. As you would expect from BMW M, this high-performance motor generates enormous pulling force over its entire speed range.

VW Touareg V10 TDI

VW Touareg V10 TDI Engine

What makes this particular automobile so remarkable is not that it’s a Volkswagen, or an SUV, or diesel-powered, but that it’s all of those things with a twin-turbocharged 10-cylinder engine thrown into the mix. This Frankenstein-ish power plant would only feature for a couple of years before the whole Dieselgate fiasco, and had it not been for the calamity which ensued, it surely would have garnered more recognition than it has mustered to this day. All of its characteristics exude a bias towards low-end power, and the stats certainly reflect this – 309 hp and 553 lb-ft of torque @ 2,000 rpm. Oh, and don’t forget, a very utilitarian tow rating of 7,700 lbs.

Dodge Ram SRT-10 8.3L V10

Dodge Ram SRT-10 8.3L V10 Engine

Imagine a Viper engine swapped into, then modified for use in a Dodge Ram pick-up truck, and voila. So what exactly does this magic trick entail? Well for starters, in July 2004, a Dodge Ram SRT-10 driven by NASCAR driver Brendan Gaughan, set the Guinness World Record (and the SCCA record) for the world’s fastest production truck when it achieved an average top speed of 154.587 mph. This was all possible with the help of the 500 hp and 525 lb-ft of torque that the naturally-aspirated motor produced, with 90% of its torque available at 1,500 rpm. It could even tow up to 7,500 lbs; though we would bet that most owners would forgo any procedures that might keep them from optimizing their 1/4 mile times.

Audi prices 2020 TT RS, R8 V10, and R8 V10 Decennium

Audi nipped and tucked the skin of the 2020 TT RS while maintaining the fundamentals. That means the 2.5-liter turbocharged five-cylinder with 394 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque holds steady. The price, however, doesn’t. The damage comes to starting price $66,900 plus $995 for destination, totaling $67,895. That’s $2,020 more than the previous generation for finer lines and more colors.

The standard 2020 R8 V10 coupe starts at $169,900 before the $1,250 destination fee and the $1,300 gas guzzler charge. Those two line items bring the total to $172,450, whereas the Spyder goes for $184,650 after tallying everything up. Those models put out 562 hp and 406 lb-ft, increases of 30 hp and 7 lb-ft. They’re rated to go at least 200 miles per hour: 201 mph for the coupe, 200 for the Spyder. Both MSRPs represent a $5,000 increase over the 2018 model.

The R8 V10 Performance, which changed its name from R8 V10 Plus, doesn’t add any more puissance, staying on 602 hp and 413 lb-ft. They open the bidding at $198,450 for the coupe and $210,650 for the Spyder. As the two additional members in the lineup’s 200-mph club, the coupe will do 205 mph, the Spyder 204 mph. The new Performance coupe price has gone up by $1,500, but the Performance Spyder is the same price as the 2018 model.

At the top of the heap comes the limited-edition R8 V10 Decennium, which celebrates 10 years of the 5.2-liter V10 engine. Production is capped at 222 examples, only 50 of them coming to the U.S. If there are any places left in line, a buyer would need $217,545.

The TT RS and R8 series production models are due in showrooms in spring. Before then, we’ll see them at next week’s New York Auto Show.

2018 Audi R8 V10 Plus Competition Package is a hardcore, ultra-rare R8

While the the Audi R8 RWS was a pretty rare beast when it was revealed, Audi has released yet another, even rarer R8. It’s the 2018 Audi R8 V10 Plus Competition Package, and only 10 of them will be sold in the United States.

There are a few things that differentiate the car from a regular R8 V10 Plus. Immediately noticeable are the various aero aids appended to the Audi. They include a front splitter, canards, rear diffuser, and a big rear wing. They’re very functional, doubling the regular R8 Plus’s downforce at 93.7 mph (150 kph) for a total of 114.6 pounds. At the car’s top speed of 196 mph, the aero parts provide 220.5 pounds of downforce.

The Competition Package R8 is lighter than a normal V10 Plus. Audi says it’s 28.6 pounds lighter in total, with 2.2 pounds coming from lightweight carbon ceramic brake pads with titanium backing plates, and 26.4 coming from the milled aluminum wheels. To flesh out what is basically an extreme handling package, Audi also gives this model three-way adjustable coilover suspension.

All 10 of the R8s will be painted Suzuka Gray, which looks like white to us. The interior is kept plush with full leather trim, an Alcantara steering wheel, carbon fiber shift paddles and even a 550-watt Bang and Olufsen sound system. It’s certainly a different approach than the ultralight R8 RWS.

Also different from the R8 RWS is the price. While that rear-drive special was the most affordable R8, this Competition Package model is more, a lot more. It rings in at $238,750 with destination fee, which is a $43,100 premium over the standard V10 Plus it’s based on. It’s also $98,800 more than the R8 RWS.

Related Video:

No Audi R8 planned after current generation ends

Another Volkswagen Group icon looks headed for the River Styx. A few days after Autocar reported that the VWBeetle won’t live past the current generation, Car and Driver reports “there are no current plans for a direct replacement” of the Audi R8. That information came after chatting to Audi R&D boss Peter Mertens at the Geneva Motor Show. Responding to a suggestion that the carmaker didn’t have a next generation planned for the striking supercar, Mertens replied, “I would say so.”

That doesn’t mean imminent demise. Audi just released the rear-wheel drive R8 RWS, and there’s a V6-powered R8 on the way. That car will use the 2.9-liter, twin-turbo six-cylinder already working for the RS4 Avant, RS5, Porsche Panamera and Cayenne. That’s why Mertens also said, “It has a long life, and it’s doing OK.” The sales success of the V6 trim might decide the definition of the word “long,” but no matter what, “long” probably won’t mean the same 10-year span of the first generation. Audi has a bunch of other plans to flesh out and pay for, and a fading star that can’t spread development costs doesn’t make sense.

This isn’t the first account of the R8’s demise. Last December, Automobile reported that the R8 would be “phased out in 2020” as the new Lamborghini Huracán arrives; the R8 and Huracán share the same platform and are built alongside one another in Audi’s Neckarsulum, Germany, plant. Then, the 650-horsepower RS Q8 would take over as the new conventional flagship for Audi Sport, while the E-Tron GT four-door due in 2020 will make all-electric waves.

The R8 moved 772 units in the U.S. last year, placing it only just ahead of the more expensive and more exotic McLaren 570S, and just behind the more expensive and more exotic twin-brother Lamborghini Huracán. In the competitive set, the Mercedes-AMG GT sold 1,609 units. The Porsche 911 Turbo drubs them all.

If any car can be said to have done its job as a halo offering, though, the R8 is that car. The first R8 put all eyes on a brand that sold half as many cars in 2006 as it does today. The V8 coupe mixed everyday manners with supernatural high-speed handling, the V10 gave up a few tenths in suppleness in return for bonus payouts of sound and fury. The coupe was also stupendously efficient at winning races the world over, both for factory teams and privateers who might soon struggle to find an equivalent replacement. And we wouldn’t have the word “sideblades” without it.

Mertens did make sure to caution, “Never say never; performance cars are good for Audi.” But if you look at the sales numbers and Audi’s planned future, and then look at the wall … you’ll probably see some writing.

Related Video: