The Audi R8 has been around for quite some time now, since 2006 to be more precise, but despite the fact that the very first street version is almost 7 years old, the manufacturer managed to keep the R8 fresh by improving it with almost every passing year. Now the latest, Audi R8 2013 has been officially unveiled and by the looks of it, it brings a serious list of changes when compared to the ongoing model.
First of all the new R8 comes with a 4.2 liter V8 engine developing 430 horsepower that can go from 0 to 62 mph in 4.3 seconds.
However a brand new R8 V10 Plus model will be available in the future featuring a 5.2 liter V10 engine under the hood that is able to produce 550 horsepower and 398 lb-ft of torque. That's an increase of 25 horsepower and 8 lb-ft of torque when compared to the regular V10. Furthermore the V10 Plus will share some carbon fiber elements with the R8 GT.
Nevertheless, probably the biggest change of all consists in the brand new seven-speed S Tronic gearbox that manages to push the V10 from 0 to 62 mph in just 3.5 seconds, while delivering a top speed of 197 mph. This particular gearbox utilizes multi-plate clutches lying behind one another, a feature that has never been seen on the R8. The new gearbox is able to change gears practically without any interruption and that will not only make things smoother, but it will also increase overall performance.
The chassis has also been tampered with and borrows more technologies usually seen in racing cars including double wishbones to all four wheels and specially tuned springs and shock absorbers on the R8 V10 Plus.
In terms of aesthetics the new R8 stays true to its predecessors but manages to brings some new elements to the table, including the redrawn LED headlights and taillights, a reshaped front grille and bumper, whereas at the back we can see a new set of circular tailpipes and a larger diffuser.
On the interior the new model is as generous as ever and comes with diamond-stitched Nappa leather, quilted upholstery on the seats and door trim as well as a wide range of customization options that include piano black finishes, carbon fiber elements and lots of different colors. A Bang& Olufsen sound system comes as standard and the option list includes things like high-beam assistant, cell phone preparation, parking system with reversing camera, seatbelt microphone and voice controls.
The Audi R8 is expected to hit the European market by the end of this year with the base price of EUR 113,500 for the V8 Coupe, EUR 154,600 for the V10 Coupe and EUR 124,800 / EUR 165,900 for the V8 and V10 Spyder respectively. Key competitors remain the same as before so we're looking at the Aston Martin V12 Vantage (or V8 Vantage depending on the engine in the Audi), the Ferrari 458 Italia or the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 just to name a few.