I spent a couple of days with the fastest road legal Audi ever, the second generation R8.

Fast, loud, low and attractive. The new Audi R8 does everything right. A car that excites. Everyone. It’s the supersports car for drivers, who don’t want a Lamborghini or Ferrari. Who is not interested in latter, but gets weak when he sees the Audi.
The second generation R8 is the fastest ever road legal Audi. It shares 50 % of its parts with Audi’s race car R8 LMS. It is one of the last non-turbo, naturally aspirated survivors.
965Pushing the start button you get a loud rumble, which becomes quieter after the initial start (a bit like the new 911). Just to let the driver know, that his money was well-spent and that it is really a beast, he is sitting in. It’s political loudness. If you still want to listen to a gorgeous sound symphony, push the sound button in the steering wheel. The exhaust valves will open up and you realize immediately, that the R8 is based on the Lamborghini Huracán. Accelerate and you get a blow in the neck, almost knocking you out. Explosive acceleration and response. And you can hear the engine working right behind you. The R8 gains maximum attention, it is an attention seeker.
The newest one is lighter, wider with a lower centre of gravity. The 7-speed double-clutch gearbox allows more direct, smoother shifts. The road holding is perfect. In comfort mode it is a relaxed drive. Novices can handle it with ease, even on windy country roads. In dynamic mode it emits a death rattle with stertorous breathing.. It lacks the unpredictability of a Jaguar F-Type SVR, the aura of a Ferrari and the understatement of a Porsche 911. Is it an every day sports car or a brute racer? Well, it manages to be both. To sum it up, the R8 is the perfect super-sports car. Maybe too perfect for some. But for those there is always an alternative in the Volkswagen family, the Lamborghini Huracán.

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Audi R8 V10 plus
Engine 5.2-l. V10 quattro, paired with a 7-speed double-clutch auto
Power 449kW and 560Nm
Top Speed 330 km/h
0-100km/h 3.2 seconds
Price R3 089 000
www.audi.co.za

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