Against LA’s ostentatious backdrop, Audi’s understated elegance will stand tall, especially because the company plans to launch three performance models at this year’s LA Auto Show. TFLcar.com will be covering the debut of the 2017 Audi R8, the 2016 Audi RS 7 Performance, and the 2016 Audi S8 Plus before the November 20-29 show in Los Angeles, Calif.
The spectacularly gorgeous Audi R8 sees an even more stunning redesign, with more angular headlamps and taillamps and a cleaner hood line. Now offered only in V10 and V10 Plus trims, the base R8 will sport 540 horsepower, while the V10 Plus will deliver a massive 610 horsepower with an amazing soundtrack to accompany. Audi claims that that the 2017 Audi R8 shares 50 percent of its parts with the race-ready R8 LMS — importantly, the 5.2-liter V10 is common between the two. The 2017 R8 will hit showrooms in early 2016.
For the RS 7, Audi will now offer a “Performance” trim that raises the bar even higher. Audi claims the RS 7 Performance will deliver 605 horsepower along with special “RS”-specific styling cues to differentiate it from the standard RS 7.
Aimed at improving the ultimate long-wheelbase super sedan, the Audi S8 Plus will see the introduction of an all-new 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 capable of over 600 horsepower. Given the S8’s already mind-boggling performance throughout the rev range, the S8 Plus’ 80-horsepower addition will create a tour de force of acceleration, capable of performing on the track as well as it performs on the daily grind.
The 2017 R8 has devilishly good looks and a fantastic engine, but it enters an exotic segment crowded with lofty horsepower numbers and incredible performance technology. The R8 eclipses the power figures of Mercedes’ stunning AMG GT S and Acura’s advanced NSX, but falls flat compared to 630+-horsepower Ford GT and Ferrari’s magnificent 488 GTB.
Despite the competency of Audi’s S-Tronic twin-clutch gearbox, the unit may also show its age against the likes of Porsche’s PDK and Ferrari’s F1 box, a concern for track-minded buyers. Nonetheless, as an organic, naturally-aspirated supercar with looks to kill, there’s nothing else that will deliver quite like Audi’s R8.
Please enjoy this TFLcar.com video review of the 2015 Audi R8’s laser headlamps.