Halo cars serve a vital purpose in the car world. They are the attention getter for the brand. Dealerships need to have a wild and beautiful showpiece to lure new customers in the door. What would serve this purpose better than an aluminum, all-wheel-drive, rear engine supercar known as the R8?
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The motto is “Truth in Engineering.” Audi’s renowned spaceframe, or combined body and chassis, is incredibly strong and light due to its unibody construction . Most cars carry a separate structure or sub-frame to hold powertrain and suspension components, but at the cost of extra weight. Engine and suspension parts are bolted directly to the body, saving weight and improving performance.
For engine options in the R8, you can choose from the silky smooth 4.2L V8 originally found in the RS4, or the 553 hp 5.2L V10 shared with the Gallardo and Huracan. Both powerplants have dry sump oil pans in order to be mounted very low in the body. With such a low center of gravity, there is almost no sensation of body roll when cornering; this is not your grandfather’s Audi.
No retractable hardtop? In order to keep weight at a minimum, the powered top is three layers of thick insulated fabric. The vertical glass rear window doubles as a wind deflector in topless situations and allows for a quiet cabin well north of legal speeds. If you like to be loud, press the skinny pedal and allow the dual mode exhaust to scare everyone around you for a few seconds. Your time is limited by the fact that after that brief symphony, you are at triple digit speeds.
For the performance this car returns, it should be priced at least on par with its Gallardo cousin. You will save a ton of cash and have the ability to outperform cars twice as expensive. Don’t wait, this matte black monster just arrived and is priced to move.