The 2017 Audi A8 range has been updated with revised exterior styling, new safety technologies, improved interior trim and personalisation options, and updated powertrains that increase performance and reduce emissions. Our highway run does illustrate one of the R8's only negatives, copious tyre roar at speed. Between 100-140km/h an enormous amount of tyre roar is evident especially on coarse-chip surfaces.
Buyers won't consider it a deal breaker, but the optional 20-inch wheels fitted to our test vehicle don't help the situation. Interestingly, the launch vehicles are all fitted with Michelin rubber as opposed to the standard issue Pirellis apparently the Michelins are better able to cope with the track torture they will cop later on.
The other negative depending on which way you look at it is the lack of a V8 version. That void shifts the price spread for the R8 and also shifts the playing field a little for the model.The other factor that slaps you in the face within that first acceleration burst is the brutal efficiency of the seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch transmission. The smoothness of the shift is worthy of mention here, too. There's less of the savagery you sense in the Huracan at the limit, just ridiculously fast forward progress.
The most popular model, the Audi A8 3.0-litre TDI.has seen a power increase to 190kW (+10kW) with 580Nm (+30Nm) of torque. A freeway on-ramp provides us with the first opportunity to stretch the V10's legs. It matters not which drive mode you select, the shift is so fast, there's no discernible loss of forward momentum. It's almost like you're playing a video game, such is the rapidity of engagement.
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