Audi Supercars Cars

2012 Audi R8 V10 by APR Tuned

2012 Audi R8 V10 by APR Tuned

US-based tuning company, APR Tuned, has produced a modest performance upgrade for the Audi R8 V10 that allows it to be more competitive than its R8 V10 big brother, the R8 GT.

In order to do this, the tuner from Alabama tweaked the German supercar’s ECU unit in a variety of levels for different fuel quality to give it that added juice. Stage One, as the video above previews, gives the R8 V10 an increased output of 559 horsepower at 7,950 rpm and 411 lb/ft of torque when the car carries 91 octane fuel. Should you be using 93 octane fuel, that output rises to a tidy 583 horsepower at 7,850 rpm and 431 lb/ft of torque.

An impressive improvement, to say the least. Especially when you consider that the standard R8 V10 is capable of "only" 526 horsepower at 7,750 rpm and 395 lb/ft of torque.

The program, it appears, is still under development, but like we said, APR Tuned has released a video of the Stage One ECU program to give us an idea of what’s in store.

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2012 Audi R8 GT Spyder "Triade Bianco" by Wheelsandmore

2012 Audi R8 GT Spyder "Triade Bianco" by Wheelsandmore

German tuner Wheelsandmore is back, and they’re returning with yet another impressive tuning program. This time for the limited-run Audi R8 GT Spyder.

Since the German super car is only limited to 333 units, the fact that it gets its own tuning program ramps up the exclusivity to a whole new level. The whole onus of the program was to make the R8 GT Spyder lighter and more powerful, a task that’s easier said than done.

In order to accomplish it, Wheelsandmore prepared a special performance package that includes a lighter stainless steel exhaust system with remote-able valve flaps that’s 40% lighter than the standard equipment. Add that to special carbon-frame air filters and a reprogrammed ECU that nets a new output of 620 horsepower and 435 lb/ft of torque, and you have an R8 GT Spyder that’s even more special than the rest of its special edition brethren.

Suspension was also an important part of the program. In this case, Wheelsandmore fitted the German super car with the latest state-of-the-art motorsports technology from KW-Automotive within the LCS (level-control-system) hydraulic lift up system. There’s also a remote control switch that provides an additional road clearance of +40mm and a separate and independently adjustable rebound- and compression damping, giving the owner free reign over his super car’s suspension set-up.

Finally, there are the handcrafted 3-piece ultralight forged 6Sporz² wheels that can be customized and finished according to the customer’s whims. The wheels are then wrapped in a set of Continental Sport Contact 5P tires.

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2012 Audi R8 Collection Sport by Graf Weckerle

2012 Audi R8 Collection Sport by Graf Weckerle

Ever since the Audi R8 first made us fall in love with it some years ago, it has been one of our favorite super cars. So much so, in fact, that we never get tired of seeing a tuning company perform some aftermarket modifications on it.

The latest to do is German tuner Graf Weckerle who recently unveiled their new Collection Sport program for the venerable German supercar.

Comprising of aesthetic and performance upgrades, Graf Weckerle gave the R8 the kind of aftermarket love it’s been known for. For starters, the R8 was finished with a new color scheme - a two-tone anthracite shade - and fitted with Graf Weckerle brand logos on the side blade. On top of that, the German tuner also added a fully adjustable aluminum coilover suspension and a new set of lightweight multi-piece Graf Weckerle Collection Sport Forged Wheels that have been dressed in a special high-gloss black coating with the wheel discs polished to a brilliant finish.

Under the hood of the R8, Graf Weckele went and gave the Audi super car’s 4.2-liter FSI engine a reprogrammed ECU, as well as a new handmade stainless steel exhaust system with exhaust flaps. All told, these mechanical enhancements paved the way for the R8 to produce an output of 455 horsepower, an increase from the standard model’s 420-horsepower output.

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2012 Audi R8 V10 by Racing One

2012 Audi R8 V10 by Racing One

We’ve seen plenty of tuning programs done on the Audi R8 V10 super car. Today, we add another one to that collection.

This program comes courtesy of German motors sports service provider, Racing One, who gave the German supercar a whole lot of new race-ready modifications, highlighted, of course, by a remapped ECU that netted 610 horsepower. That’s up from the 525 horsepower output from the standard model.

Interior modifications were also done on the car, particularly the addition of bucket seats with six-point belts, braces, and even a fire extinguisher. Mechanically, Racing One adapted a running gear that comes with two-way MDS dampers from Bilstein Motorsport. There are also brake pads from Performance Friction Brakes, and a titanium, naturally flip-controlled exhaust system made by the authority in exhaust systems, Akrapovic.

All told, the program will cost more than just a pretty penny for a lot of interested buyers. If you want this installed on your R8, prepare to shell out €26,000, which is around $33,000 based on current exchange rates.

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Video: 2012 Top Marques Monaco - Supercar Show

Video: 2012 Top Marques Monaco - Supercar Show

Our favorite Youtube user, Marchettino, has managed to delight us one more time by attending the 2012 edition of the Top Marques Monaco to film all of the amazing vehicles in attendance. We have to admit the list of supercars is quite impressive.

For those who don’t know, the Top Marques is an important supercar show that brings together some of the most expensive and exclusive supercars, hypercars, and tuning projects every year. It’s kind of like Christmas for us auto journalists, but without the big, jolly guy giving one of these supercars to us as a present. This kind of Christmas comes with huge prices and tremendous power backing it up.

Our favorite from the entire list of vehicles in attendance this year is the Koenigsegg Agera R, but the list is much, much longer.

Hit the jump for a full list of the cars featured in the video and pick out your favorite!

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Video: Three-year old cutie still loves her dad’s Audi R8 Spyder

Safety and parenting issues notwithstanding, this video is about as cute as it gets. We all remember Cris Ostberg as the dude who once put his then 18-month old daughter in the front passenger seat of his Audi R8 V10 Spyder while she gleefully shouted "turbo!" every chance she got.

Fast forward to 2012 and the little sweetheart is now three years old. But while she’s gotten bigger, her love for the Audi R8 V10 Spyder doesn’t appear to have waned in the least. In this new video, Ostberg was careful to follow all the safety precautions to ensure that his daughter wouldn’t be hurt, including switching off the passenger airbags.

Understandably, some folks might have a problem with Ostberg’s rather loose interpretation of responsible parenting, but if you can put that aside, the sight of his daughter continuing in her "turbo!!!" exaltation is just too cute to ignore.

Let’s just hope that dear old Cris doesn’t get any genius ideas and let his daughter drive the R8 V10 Spyder on her 4th birthday.

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Video: Audi educates us on the R8 E-Tron’s "E-Sound"

One of the biggest allures people have of supercars is the ear-splitting noise these cars produce. After all, nothing speaks to a car’s power than all those ponies working in harmony to produce a roar like no other.

But what happens with a car like the Audi R8 E-Tron, a supercar that’s powered by silent electric motors?

In the case of Audi, it involves a few compromises. In this video, Audi talks about the challenges of producing that emotional sound supercar owners love on a car that’s run by electricity. The solution, as far as Audi engineers are concerned, was to develop a synthetic sound signature that can be played with a loudspeaker attached to the car’s undercarriage.

Take note of the word "synthetic" because that in itself means that the sound is fabricated and not directly derived from the engine. Nevertheless, the objective with the "E-Sound" was to generate enough noise to allow drivers to enjoy the thrills of a supercar with an electric powertrain.

Check out the videos - one of which you can find after the jump - to find out how Audi accomplished giving the Audi R8 E-Tron the supercar-like sounds similar to its gasoline-powered siblings.

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$1.5 Million in Luxury Cars Seized by U.S. Customs

$1.5 Million in Luxury Cars Seized by U.S. Customs

There are a lot of new car scams in the world and most of them are initiated by the new car dealer, not the buyer. A group of buyers flipped the script on several Los Angeles dealerships, by using fake identities to purchase 20 cars and were shipping them to Hong Kong and Vietnam to sell them for two to three times their U.S. value.

It was a laundry list of luxury vehicles, such as a $280,000 2010 Ferrari 458 Italia, an Audi Quattro, 2012 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4, along with several Mercedes, Lexus, Infiniti, and BMW SUVs among others. For some reason, the thieves even threw in a Toyota Tundra.

The one that got these fraudsters busted was the Ferrari 458 Italia, as Ferrari fitted the supercar with a GPS system as standard, which Ferrari used to track the car once they found out they were defrauded. This led U.S. Customs and the California highway Patrol to conduct a full investigation and find the cars on a ship that had already pulled away from the port.

Needless to say, that ship was forced to come back and all but four of the cars were recovered. The four non-recovered cars are due to be shipped back by Vietnamese Customs.

According to the report, had the fraudsters not gone after the Ferrari, chances are they would have gotten away with this scam and made a ton of money in the process. The total amount of the vehicles seized by U.S. customs is estimated at $1.5 million, which would have pulled in around $3 million in Hong Kong and Vietnam.

We are still trying to figure out what in the world a Toyota Tundra was doing in the mix with all of these high-end luxury cars. We also wonder which thief drew the short straw and was stuck going to the Toyota dealership to pick this thing up?

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Video: Audi releases first teaser of the next-generation R8

Video: Audi releases first teaser of the next-generation R8

It’s no secret that the R8 supercar launched Audi into a whole new stratosphere of attention, not just within the auto industry, but in the entire world.

The supercar that made its world debut in 2006 has starred in a number of Hollywood blockbusters. It has participated in some of the most famous and grueling races in the world. And most important of all, it became so popular that Audi launched a whole revolution of models inspired by the R8.

Now that the car is in its sixth year of existence, the time has finally come for Audi to introduce the second generation R8. To give us a little slice of the hype pie, the German automaker has released a pretty cool tribute video for their supercar, complete with all six different models of the R8, as well as a sneak peek of what’s shaping up to be an all-new model.

Check out the video and going Audi in waxing nostalgic on their supercar. And before you start reminiscing, keep your eyes open towards the latter part of the video when the second-generation R8 is teased ever so subtly.

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Audi R8 facelift planned for 2013 model; New generation to follow in 2014

Audi R8 facelift planned for 2013 model; New generation to follow in 2014

We’ve already touched on the report that the next-generation Audi R8 has been scheduled for a 2014 release (in Europe) with rumors circulating that we’ll be seeing a facelift version of the supercar before that time comes. Now, we can put the rumors to rest, because according to CAR, a face lifted version of the R8 is now being penned for late next year as a 2013 model.

As can be expected with a facelift model, Audi is only opting for minor tweaks on both the exterior and interior of the car. It appears that the 2013 R8 will - for the first time - carry a refreshed grille that was first introduced last year by the e-Tron Spyder Concept. New headlights are also in the plans, as is a new S-tronic dual clutch gearbox, which replaces the R-tronic sequential manual gearbox on the current model.

Some other prominent changes expected to be made on the face lifted R8 are the use of Audi’s latest MMI interface system, an increased use of carbon fiber to cut down the car’s weight and, most importantly, an improved engine output from the current model’s 525-horsepower output all to the way to the neighborhood of 540 horsepower.

This is the first time that these details have been divulged, so we’re more than curious to see how the facelift model of the iconic R8 will look and feel like before Audi ushers in the next generation model in 2014.

Speaking of the 2014 Audi R8, Car has learned that the new model will carry an evolutionary styling theme with an absence of the current model’s sideblades and manual transmission. The body will switch from 100% aluminum to a multi-material combination, including a carbon fiber rear firewall. The new R8 will also have a transmission tunnel and the B-posts that will double as rollover protection elements. These changes will allow for a drop of about 24 kilos (about 53 lbs) on the car’s overall weight, allowing the R8 to be about 13% stiffer. Power will still come from a 450 HP naturally aspirated V8 engine for the base model, but the V10 will get a power boost to about 550 HP.

The new generation Audi R8 will be followed by the new R8 Spyder just one year after its launch, so expect the drop top sometime in 2015.

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BMW officially closes the door on building an Audi R8 rival

Since debuting the M1 Hommage Concept a few years ago, BMW has waffled back and forth on the prospect of bringing a BMW supercar in the market to serve as the main rival of the Audi R8.

It’s been frustrating for us to listen to all this "will they or won’t they" nonsense and we’ve been waiting for a concrete answer from the German automaker. Now, it appears that we finally have it.

In an interview conducted by egmCarTech, Matt Russel, Production Manager of the M-Division of BMW North America, has officially put all the rumors of an M1 successor to rest. Sadly, there won’t be one.

“We’ve discussed these possibilities”, said Russell, “but ultimately, we didn’t feel the need to make a very exclusive high-end supercar and we still don’t. I already firmly believe that we produce supercars, except that they’re two in one: an executive car with supercar performance. They are the essence of BMW M-Cars.”

Russell also added that the currentBMW M3, despite its un-supercarlike appearance, can already go tow to tow with a car like the R8. "The M3 is spot on with the Audi R8 V8 in terms of performance numbers like lateral G’s, braking and acceleration.”

We’re not going to dispute that, but at the same time, there’s nothing supercar-like about the M3 in terms of the way it looks. It’s one thing to have a car that feels like a supercar, but it’s another thing for a car to feel AND look like a supercar.

Guess we’ll just have to wait for the BMW i8 to be introduced in 2014.

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2011 Audi R8 V10 Spyder by Mansory

2011 Audi R8 V10 Spyder by Mansory

For all of their vast experience in the auto tuning world, Mansory has never built a project for the Audi R8. Sure, there have been Ferraris, Porsches, and Mercedes’, but no Audis.

All that, however, is about to change since the German tuning company has brought their very first program for the Audi supercar. The package is actually for the R8 V10 Spyder, which will be introduced to Mansory expertise courtesy of cosmetic, aerodynamic, and performance upgrades.

Fresh off of the box are the aforementioned cosmetic and aerodynamic improvements, which include a new bonnet, a new front grill, side skirts, and a new rear bumper. There’s also a new front spoiler that provides more downforce, a new rear apron with an integrated rear diffuser, and a set of 20" lightweight forged Mansory wheels rounding out the physical modifications on the R8 V10 Spyder.

Mansory is also offering a comprehensive interior program for its customers. Depending on tastes and preferences, customers can choose to dress up their R8 V10 Spyder with a new leather upholstery with Mansory couture and carbon applications, illuminated door entry strips, and aluminum pedals and footrests.

Of course, making the car prettier is not the only significant part of this Mansory-tuned R8 V10 Spyder. There’s also the matter of the car’s 5.2-liter V10 FSI engine, which sees a significant performance upgrade in the form of a newly-installed sports air filter, and a news sport exhaust system. The resulting modifications give the R8 V10 Spyder a performance boost that takes an already powerful 525 horsepower all the way up to 552 horsepower, to go with an increased peak torque of 406 lb/ft of torque.

UPDATE 11/22/11: Mansory has released new photos of their work on the Audi R8 Spyder. It was later than we thought, but nevertheless, the photos are well worth the delay. Check them out in the gallery section!

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