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2019 Audi R8

2019 Audi R8

The ultimate road-going R8?

Introduced in 2015, the second-generation Audi R8 was facelifted for the 2019 model year. The mid-cycle upgrade arrived rather soon, suggesting that the supercar might be redesigned in three years or so. The facelift brought a sportier exterior, a mildly altered interior, and important changes under the hood. Likewise, the R8 V10 Plus model was renamed the V10 Performance.

Sharing 50 percent of components with the R8 LMS GT3 race car shown at the 2018 Paris Motor Show, the revised R8 looks more aggressive than ever. It’s also significantly more powerful than before, with up to 30 horsepower added to the 5.2-liter V-10 engine. It’s also the first R8 to surpass 200 mph in every trim, including Spyder models. Although it was originally believed that Audi might add a new GT model to the lineup, the sportier car spotted testing in Europe turned out to be just the regular facelift. Let’s find out more about all of that in the review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Audi R8.

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Audi Reveals E-Tron FE05, Preps for Upcoming Formula E Season

Audi Reveals E-Tron FE05, Preps for Upcoming Formula E Season

The double is in sight for Audi

Audi is preparing for what they hope another successful season in Formula E as they enter a new stage of full-on works racing in the top EV series in the world. The first race of the season will take place in Saudi Arabia on December 15th.

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2018 Audi R8 V10 RWS

2018 Audi R8 V10 RWS

Only 999 units of this rear-wheel drive Audi R8 will be built

It should come as no surprise that while in search for a little differentiation for its R8 lineup, Audi decided to develop a special edition model that ditched one of its most important claims to fame: the quattro all-wheel-drive system. And so there it was at the Frankfurt Motor Show for all the world to see. The limited edition Audi R8 officially goes by the name R8 V10 RWS, and according to Audi Sport CEO Stephan Winkelmann, it’s a model that Audi developed specifically for purists with an “appreciation for essential driving enjoyment.”

The special edition R8 V10 is limited to just 999 units and each one of them will ditch the automaker’s famous quattro AWD system in favor of rear-wheel drive. That’s the car’s claim to fame, above all else, and it’s a claim that no other variant of the current-generation Audi R8 has. Beyond the RWD offering, the R8 V10 also features a good amount of exterior and interior changes, as well as significant modifications to its chassis and suspension to accommodate the rear-wheel drive set-up. If it’s hard to imagine what an RWD Audi R8 is all about, think of it as a lighter version of the standard R8 that’s been tuned specifically to put more control of the car in the driver’s hands. Think drifting in an AWD R8 is cool? Well, imagine what you can do with an R8 that sends all of its power in the rear wheels. This is what the Audi R8 V10 RWS is offering, among other things. Better be quick though because only 999 units will be made. Miss out on one and you’re once again staring at the aftermarket tuning scene to get your rear-wheel drive R8 fix.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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2016 Audi TTS Coupe – Driven

2016 Audi TTS Coupe – Driven

The TT is all grown up

It was 1998 when the TT rolled off the assembly line for the first time. Its cutesy, rounded, toy-like shape looked like another take on the New Beetle idea. It came from the same automaker, after all. But compared to the original, the all-new 2016 Audi TT is a stark contrast of sharp lines and purposeful curves. Its menacing appearance gives off a more masculine vibe that pairs well with its powerful drivetrain and fighter jet cockpit.

This change didn’t happen overnight, though. The gradual progression from round to ripped can be seen through the TT’s lineage. The generation that gaps the original and the 2016 model shows signs of a squared-off jaw line and manicured five o’clock shadow, though nowhere near as striking as this new third generation.

But it’s not just a fresh face that’s new. Audi swapped in the new MQB platform that underpins the A3 and Volkswagen Golf. Extensive thinning of extra weight and the addition of more power makes the TT a better performer. Audi says more than 110 pounds were dropped between the second and third generations. In addition, more power (292 horses and 280 pound-feet of torque, to be exact) make the 2016 TTS a proper 2+2 sports coupe.

I recently had the chance to sample the 2016 TTS for a week on my home turf in Central Florida. The hot weather was perfect for the Pirelli summer performance tires shod on the beautiful 20-inch alloy wheels. The heat might not have been ideal conditions for the 2.0-liter TFSI four-cylinder, but it didn’t seem to mind.

So what’s the Audi TTS like to live with? Keep reading to find out.

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2015 Audi RS Q3

2015 Audi RS Q3

It’s been exactly 20 years since the high-performance RS badge made its debut on the S2 Avant in 1994, and Audi is now offering RS versions for nearly every vehicle in its lineup. The newest member of the family was launched in 2013 as the RS Q3. Audi’s smallest performance crossover is based on a concept car shown in 2012 and went on sale in late 2013. After only a year in European dealerships — the vehicle has yet to reach U.S. shores — the RS Q3 received a mild visual update and a revised drivetrain for the 2015 model year.

The upgrade brings the RS Q3 in line with the facelift applied to the standard Q3 as far as visuals go, and adds even more power under the hood, where the venerable 2.5-liter five-cylinder remains the company’s engine of choice. While the sheet metal remains largely unchanged, the RS Q3 becomes more aerodynamic and quicker than its short-lived predecessor, a change that’s expected with a vehicle wearing such an iconic badge. Read on to discover all of the updates behind this beefed-up crossover.

Continue reading to learn more about the Audi RS Q3.

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2014 Audi S5 - Driven

2014 Audi S5 - Driven

I’d honestly not given the S5 much thought before this week. Why, when Audi offers up much flashier models like the R8, RS7, and upcoming TT? It wasn’t until I drove the 2014 S5 Coupe that I discovered this hidden gem in Audi’s lineup. It might not be the most powerful version of the coupe, but with 333 supercharged horses under its mile-long hood and a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission sending power to all four wheels, I found myself finding excuses to go for a drive.

It hit me midway through the week that my black-on-black tester with satin chrome accents looks like something Bruce Wayne would drive when not fighting crime in the Batmobile. Its two-door architecture, sleek profile, and menacing color scheme lends itself for the perfect, if not stereotypical, wealthy bachelor’s car. The techno-filled cockpit further solidifies my thoughts as I found myself impressed with the level of refinement in Audi’s MMI infotainment system.

While the S5 might be better suited to a Bruce Wayne kind of lifestyle, it still performed decently enough when the time came to chauffeur the kids around. Yes, a full-sized child seat fits in the back seat. Ingress and egress was made easier by a quick-release lever on the front seatbacks that allowed the chairs to move forward without losing its last position. It afforded just enough room for crawling back to buckle the kiddo.

But a minivan this thing is not. The S5 is more at home on twisty, backcountry roads and making time on the interstate. Its demeanor changes with the driver’s mood – even without changing the Audi Drive Select system. The S5 makes a great grand touring car capable of long-distance travel and short distance track runs.

Click past the jump for the full review

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2013 Audi RS7 By ABT Sportsline

2013 Audi RS7 By ABT Sportsline

The Audi RS7 is maybe one Audi model that doesn’t need any upgrades to make it more awesome than it already is. It features a muscular 4.0-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 that delivers 560 horsepower between 5,700 and 6,600 rpm, and 516 pound-feet of torque between 1,750 and 5,500 rpm, which is rather powerful for its class and enough to launch it to 60 mph in a supercar-like 3.7 seconds.

ABT Sportsline is well known for pushing Audis to their limits, and it decided the RS7 is ripe for a boost in power. So. it came up with a kit for the four-door coupe that includes an ABT Engine Control combined with a new exhaust system with "New Generation" Power S.

These changes bump the mighty 4.0-liter V-8 to either 666 horsepower and 612 pound-feet of torque or 700 horsepower and 649 pound-feet of torque, depending on the level you choose. The most powerful version can hit a top speed of 198 mph, and we estimate the 0-to-60 mph time to be around 3.5 seconds..

Click past the jump to read more about the Audi RS7 by ABT Sportsline.

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2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet

2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet

The gifts just keep coming from Audi’s quattro performance tuning division: stunning first official images of the brand-new 2014 RS5 Cabriolet, which will be coming to American Audi dealers later this fall.

Joining the R8 and the new RS7, the RS5 Cabriolet brings enough horsepower and visual aggression to break glass with just one stare. Yes, the Audi’s LEDs are not exactly the friendly smile worn by many cars in traffic. The metallic honeycomb grille is gigantic and looks capable of ingesting a whole family of birds at its 174 mph top speed.

The atmospheric V-8 produces 450 horsepower, with an optional sports exhaust and Black Optics package hiding the twin coffee-can oval exhaust outlets under the diffuser panel. These cans are so large that they define the lower rear graphic of the RS5, and look really incredible with the sharp bumper corners up top. Dark wheels bring standard steel discs with an interesting fluted edge design, but carbon ceramic brakes are available for ultimate autobahn stopping power.

Any tradeoff versus the RS5 coupe yet? Wind in your hair, Audi’s classic aluminum brightwork on the windshield surround, and a flat soft-top all seem better than the coupe. Seating for four is also possible in the RS5 Cab, which loses only 2 cubic-feet of luggage room with the top down.

A $10,000 premium sees RS5 Cab base prices at $78,000, but the optional comfort seats with heat and ventilation look ideal for this beach bruiser, so budget about $85,000 in total for the Black Optics upgrades as well.

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet, the hottest four-seat Audi drop-top ever made.

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2015 Audi S8

2015 Audi S8

As BMW and Mercedes keep changing their lineups in the hopes of dragging in new customers from one another, Audi is remaining fairly quite. In the last few years, it has chosen to simply upgrade its lineup instead of completely changing things, and rightfully so, as the German luxury car builder has grown leaps and bounds in recent years.

Its latest tweak comes by way of the revised S8 that is set to hit showrooms in the 2015 model year.

The S8 is and always has been the precise definition of a sleeper car, as its relatively unimposing look, rounded body and large exterior give it the look of a cushy luxury sedan. However, that throaty, turbocharged V-8 under its hood has a completely different agenda than its luxurious exterior and interior.

The S8 is one of those rare breeds that allow you to talk million-dollar business deals one second and smoke a Porsche 911 to 60 mph the next. There’s really nothing else like it this side of the $150k mark. Sure, you can make claims that the Jag XJ Supersport — if you still want one after Dick Van Dykes went all "Fisker Karma" on him — or the S63 AMG are worthy competitors, but we doubt either exudes the class of the S8 as it pins your head against the headrest.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 S8

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2013 Audi R8 Razor Spyder GTR by PPI Speed Design

2013 Audi R8 Razor Spyder GTR by PPI Speed Design

German auto design house PPI launched its new company name and a new Audi R8-based Razor Spyder GTR model this weekend at Pebble Beach Concours week. PPI is now called PPI Speed Design, and to go with the new name is this hot open-air conversion kit for both the V-8 and V-10 R8 supercars.

Marked out by freer breathing for the induction and exhaust, the most notable element of the Razor Spyder is the open-air door cutouts that make every day a breezy California summer.

Cut from aluminum and reinforced with carbon fiber, the door cutouts promise a spectacular view of the road and create a cockpit that feels open and free like a track day special or the Aston Martin CC100 speedster. Lacking weatherproofing (or side windows) to provide these interesting cockpit vents, the PPI “Spyder Doors” take the R8 V-10 Spyder’s drama level and performance level - then cranks it up to "11."

The full complement of PPI Speed Design carbon-fiber styling and aerodynamic tweaks are included on the prototype seen above, which also features a custom satin matte blue paint and contrast black features for the side air ducts and a giant dual intake scoop behind the passenger headrests.

The result is certainly dramatic in a way that most modified R8’s are not, with giant virgin gold painted brake calipers and a GT3-inspired front air dam looking amazing with the latest LED headlights from the latest R8 Audi design.

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2013 PPI Speed Design Razor Spyder GTR, a complete package or individual components from this German supercar enhancer.

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2014 Audi S8

2014 Audi S8

There’s a distinct thematic change when moving up Audi’s performance ranks from A to S to RS models. This four-door super-limo sticks to the script by offering the controlled but comfortable ride of the A8 paired with extreme power and sprint performance.

How quick is the S8? What do you have to drag race it against? It’s beaten everything from the R8 to the BMW Alpina B7. Only a select few cars on earth can beat this beast for sheer effortless pace. Just floor it and hang on tight.

The S8 is then a luxury barge with the performance potential to pass an R8 without really trying. It is one of those cars you can imagine Audi executives designing for themselves first and offering for sale second.

The S8 comes in atop the other A8 variants, including a TDI for 2014, but below the range-topping A8 L W12. After the BMW’s shaming at the drag strip, only the upcoming Bentley Flying Spur and the brand-new 2014 S63 AMG 4Matic can keep up with this level of AWD pace. Oh, and don’t forget the crushing prowess of the Porsche Panamera Turbo.

The A8/S8 pair is unique within the Volkswagen Group because the costly aluminum space frame and panels are not sharable assets for Bentley or Porsche at the moment. The addition of a world-beating 520 horsepower twin-turbo V-8 engine and eight-speed automatic mean the S8 is one of the most desirable super sedans available at any price.

The major downsides for the A8 – old man styling, slowness – virtually disappear when the car is packing the S8 engine and body kit. Is it enough to earn sales from the extremely capable competition?

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Audi S8 with highlights on cool performance features and equipment.

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2014 Audi TT

2014 Audi TT

The Audi press update for the 2014 TT reads like an obituary. There are actually a couple things to celebrate with this run-out special roadster and 2+2 coupe. Basically everything is included on the 2014 TT twins as standard: S-line trim, DSG, MRC and Quattro to name a few. The combo can still hustle the little Audi to 60 mph in just over five seconds.

So why all the doom and gloom? The second-generation TT is very old at this point and really needs the facelift that is coming next year. Audi has also promised the car will be lighter and more performance-focused than ever before.

The TT needs a new style because it is already pretty sophisticated and lightweight. It drives with the old inert Audi style that some do not enjoy as much as rear-drive competitors. Mostly, however, the problems with this car are image-based.

The TT has competition from more-focused cars, like the BMW Z4, Mercedes-Benz SLK and even the forthcoming Scion FR-S convertible. Apart from the Scion, all are actually far more expensive than this little rocket’s $38,000 price.

Is this year the best time to jump into the Audi TT with all the equipment and a few discounts as well?

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 changes and equipment highlights.

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2014 Audi S6

2014 Audi S6

The Audi S6 is the only Volkswagen Group model so far to use the revolutionary new twin-turbo V-8 paired with the firm’s twin-clutch transmission. The technical merits of the design allow the S6 to beat the remarkable sub-4-second sprint stats achieved by the larger S8 despite packing 100 fewer horsepower.

The transition from the luxury A6 to the S6 is a comprehensive redesign of nearly all the car’s key mechanical systems and components. The exterior style barely moves forward from the A6 S-line but does include a number of S6-exclusive elements, like the giant quad exhaust system, and deeper fascias and bumpers.

The S6 raises the bar on every aspect of the standard A6’s performance. It also changes the car’s competitive set from BMW 535i and Mercedes E350 models up to the Porsche Panamera and the new E63 AMG 4Matic. For 2014, the S6 has some reshuffled option packages and a new Black Optics trim pack to increase car’s road presence.

The Porsche Panamera is the S6’s biggest competitive threat for buyer attention. Does the Audi have the chops to dethrone the ranking AWD performance sedan king?

Click past the jump for the full review of the Audi S6 with info on the new-for-2014 features and options.

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