Audi has unveiled the new 2016 R8 ahead of its debut at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. Built on a completely new platform shared with the Lamborghini Huracan, the second-generation R8 is the most powerful and fastest production model that Audi has ever made.
The new R8 is based on the Audi Space Frame chassis which makes liberal use of carbon fibre and aluminium to cut down on weight. It gets sharper lines and bigger air intakes in the front, which give it a meaner look. The new R8 gets the option of LED headlamps or the laser headlamps, depending on the region where it is sold (as some countries still haven’t legalised their use on public roads). Aesthetically though, the new model isn’t radically different from its predecessor and is still easily identifiable as an R8. Inside, the R8 gets completely a new interior with a whiff of traditional Audi design. It boasts of an all-digital instrument console, steering mounted controls and a new MMI system.
The new Audi R8 will be powered by a retuned version of the same V10 engine, which will be available in two states of tune. The engine in the ‘standard’ R8 produces 540bhp and 540Nm of torque while the same engine churns out 610bhp and 560Nm of torque in the R8 Plus. Both the versions come with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and the Quattro all-wheel drive system. The engine employs some modern features like a start/stop system, dry sump lubrication, cylinder deactivation and both direct and indirect injection to boost the fuel efficiency by 10 per cent.
Talking about the new Audi R8, Prof Dr Ulrich Hackenberg, board member, technical development, Audi said, “Motorsport is in Audi’s genes, it has always been a permanent feature of our brand’s character. 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.”
Besides these two versions, we can also expect Audi to launch an electric hybrid E-Tron model and an R8 LMS GT3 model sometime around next year. The new Audi R8 will go on sale in the European market in the next few months, with prices starting at EUR 1.65 lakh (Rs 1.15 crore) for the standard R8 and EUR 1.87 lakh (Rs 1.30 crore) for the R8 Plus. We expect the new R8 to be launched in India no sooner than next year.