The Audi R8’s naturally-aspirated, 5.2-litre V10 engine produces one of best exhaust notes there has ever been; a soulful, spine-tingling howl. The new Audi R8 Spyder puts you right in the middle of it.
The noise comes from the production of 532bhp and 398lb/ft of torque, enough for a 0-62mph time of 3.6secs and a top speed of 197mph (for now there’s no Plus version). A seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox and quattro four-wheel-drive make the most of the power; in extremis, 100% of the power can go to the rear wheels. It’ll drift, in other words.
Handling should be up to snuff too, as the Spyder is 50% stiffer than the old car, thanks to an aluminium and carbonfibre spaceframe. Inevitably, though, weight goes up a bit to 1,612kg. Hardly heavyweight.
The cloth roof opens and closes in 20secs at speed up to 31mph. When closed, two fins at the back stretch it tight, improving refinement and giving a more coupe-like shape. The interior is as per the coupe, beautifully made and with lots of gadgetry.
Prices haven’t been set yet, but expect to pay around £130,000. Though that can skyrocket if you get carried away with the options list, which includes a Bang & Olufsen stereo with speakers in the headrests.
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By Only Motors