When Audi launched the R8, a racecar turned production vehicle in 2006, company execs knew customers would want it. Turns out they were right. The Audi R8 supercar has found 15,537 worldwide owners since its debut in 2006, not including 2011. While the much anticipated second-generation Audi R8 is still a few years off, the German auto maker is already at work making it lighter and faster than its predecessor.
The next Audi R8 is set to be launched into the super-exotic car stratosphere and will target the likes of the Ferrari 458 Scuderia, Porsche 911 GT3, and even its in-house sibling, the Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera. The R8 will probably have the least trouble catching up to the Gallardo in performance as they both share fundamental components like a lightweight carbon-fiber and aluminum monocoque platform, but the Lamborghini will still weigh a little less and have a shorter wheelbase. The next-gen Lamborghini Gallardo is scheduled to be released almost a year before the Audi R8, so you know production of Audi’s supercar is well underway.
Although the Audi R8 is a little longer than other supercars–to accommodate a more spacious cabin–it will continue to utilize a mid-engine layout and four-wheel drive. The predominantly aluminum structure will house your choice of either a 4.2-liter V-8 or a 5.2-liter V-10 engine responsible for 450 or around 550 horsepower, respectively. Each will be mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and will also have fuel-saving technologies like a sailing function also used by Porsche. Other fuel-saving technologies include automatic stop-start and brake energy recuperation, both of which are expected to contribute to the R8′s fuel economy claim of 25.7 mpg.
We also expect the R8 to spearhead Audi’s new exterior design scheme with similar elements already seen on the upcoming all-electric E-Tron vehicle. The Audi E-Tron already shares many similar structural designs with the R8 coupe and roadster. Pricing and an exact sales date has not been announced yet but stay tuned as more details unfold.