Under the Hood
The original R8 was offered with either a V8 engine or a V10, but the second-generation model is V10-only for the time being.
The 10-cylinder in question is a Lamborghini-derived naturally-aspirated 5.2-liter unit that makes 540 horsepower at 7,800 rpm and 398 pound-feet of torque at 6,500 rpm. Linked exclusively to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission controlled by shift paddles, the V10 sends the R8 from zero to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and on to a top speed of 199 mph. Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive system helps put the power to the ground.
Enthusiasts after more grunt can order the R8 V10 plus. It’s equipped with an evolution of the V10 massaged to pump out 610 horsepower at a screaming 8,250 rpm and 413 pound-feet of torque at 6,500 rpm. The extra power lowers the R8’s zero-to-60 time to 3.2 seconds, and it allows the coupe to hit 205 mph.
To keep fuel economy in check, both models pack a start/stop system, a coasting function built into the transmission and Audi’s cylinder on-demand technology, which seamlessly turns the V10 into a straight-five when its full output isn’t needed.
Dual front, side/thorax, curtain, and knee airbags are fitted as standard. Traction and stability control systems and electronic brake assist are also included.