Audi have revealed the first images of the all-new R8 ahead of it's highly anticipated exclusive reveal at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. The vehicle is the second-generation in what is set to become the jewel in Audi’s crown for many years to come.
The R8’s vim and vigour hardly spluttered its way to a successful original launch, and we expect the second-iteration's release to pan out in a similar fashion. The original R8 was a treasured trophy on the Audi mantelpiece with critics across the globe waxing lyrical of its abilities, and it’s considered one of the few affordable super-cars that successfully combine luxury with performance.
Many forget that the R8 was Audi's first ''true super-car'' if you like, and that they remain relative new-comers to an increasingly competitive market. The R8 hasn’t been pulled apart and reshaped, with subtle changes aiding both performance and agility. We expect there to be a range of special editions on offer, but at the moment you’ll have to grin and bear a 5.2-litre V10 engine offering both 532bhp and the V10 Plus which offers considerably more: 602bhp. It’s worth noting that the 532bhp is regarded as ‘standard’ , which might be the biggest stretch of that word we’ve ever seen. The V10 plus model will power its way from 0-62mph in 3.2 seconds with top speeds of over 200mph. Four-Wheel-Drive remains deep rooted in the R8 – much to the pleasure of those who enjoyed the first model.
Space Frame technology has been nurtured like a baby-lamb by Audi, and this time it’s the R8's turn to get sheared with over 50kg of its original weight being shed. This is largely due to the carbon-fibre blended materials that blanket the exterior design, and you should also consider that comparisons of the Lamborghini Huracan are not purely aesthetic – with the R8 resting smoothly on the same chassis.
The interior is largely unchanged from the original and is similarly luxurious. It’s been compared to that of the new TT, and if you've been lucky enough to see that you'll be champing at the bit to jump into the new R8. The grand, distinguished design is capped off by a 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit which replaces the old-fashioned dials. The steering wheel is multi-functional and the entire ride can be tailored and specified at the mere flick of a switch. The most exciting of which is a red (it’s always red) button on the steering wheel which will constantly intrigue you. Should you bite the bullet the R8 will snap into life, or V10 mode.
More details are expected in Switzerland, and subsequently. For now, we'll have to make-do with this tantalising preview.