Finally, we are not getting left out of the great European car market. Audi has just confirmed that they will be bringing the RS5 Coupe to the United States in 2012. It’s a few years off, but we are really thrilled about this new model. Under the hood will be the 450 horsepower V8.
Audi will also launch the R8 Spyder, which will be around $161,000. That price is for the six-speed manual models. The fancy six-speed R-tronic manu-matic is $9,000. Yes, $9,000 for a neat transmission that isn’t all that good.
We like the RS5 more in this case because taking the top off of a supercar usually doesn’t work well. The Porsche 911 Turbo Cabriolet isn’t as good as the hardtop, the Ferrari 430 Spyder isn’t as good as the hardtop and we are betting that the R8 Spyder won’t be as good as the normal R8.
Hit the jump to see the press release.
Audi announced that pricing for the new 2011 R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro supercar will begin at $161,000 with the first of the hand-assembled models reaching U.S. showrooms as soon as next month.
Audi also confirmed today that it intends to sell the Audi RS5 in the U.S. market starting in 2012. The high-revving 4.2-liter V8 engine in the Audi RS5 Coupe generates 450 horsepower. Like all Audi RS models sold in Europe and other markets, the RS5 Coupe applies its power to the road with quattro permanent all-wheel drive. Details on equipment levels, pricing and fuel economy standards will be released at a later date.
Anticipation has been building for the arrival of the first Audi open-top supercar since it appeared as the car of choice for main character Tony Stark in the blockbuster action film Iron Man 2. The newest Audi R8 maintains the perfect balance of form and function that has distinguished coupe models in the R8 sports car family. But the R8 Spyder adds innovative touches that integrate the soft top without altering the dynamic styling lines, optimal weight distribution or high-performance characteristics of the coupe models.
The 2011 model-year MSRP for the R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro is as follows:
2011 R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro (V10) pricing (excluding $1,250 destination charge, taxes, title, options and dealer charges):
R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro (manual) $161,000
R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro (R tronic) $170,000
Among the innovative features is the soft top, which weighs just 66 pounds and folds or opens in just 19 seconds up to 31 mph. It combines with a heated safety glass rear window that can be extended or retracted with the top up or down. The soft top features triple layer insulation for interior acoustics and comfort close to levels enjoyed in the coupes.
Inside, the Audi R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro seats use thermal-resistant leather, which is colored with pigments that can cool hot seats by as much as 68 degrees – even in direct sunlight. The sports car also includes the world’s first Bluetooth® integration with seat belt microphone that operates clearly even with the top down.
The 2011 R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro features the same V10 engine found in the R8 LMS racecar and the R8 5.2 quattro coupe. It achieves 525 horsepower at 8,000 rpm and 391 lb-ft of torque at 6,500 rpm. The top track speed for the R8 Spyder is 195 mph with a 0-60 mph time of 4 seconds.
One visible difference between the Audi R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro and the Audi R8 Coupe models is the absence of the signature sideblades on the Spyder – a design change that retains the coupe lines, while accentuating the unique characteristics of the open-top Spyder. Another significant difference on the R8 Spyder is the use of dramatic Aluminum Optic vents on the new rear engine cover and aluminum a-pillars.
Like all Audi R8 models, the R8 Spyder 5.2 quattro reflects the Audi commitment to lightweight construction for better handling and efficiency. The hallmark of the R8 Spyder is the industry-leading aluminum Audi Space Frame technology used for most of the body. The rear quarter-panel fenders and customized engine hood are made from Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymers.