Audi ventured into the full-size luxury segment in 1988 with the introduction of V8 model. It became its flagship vehicle, and it was the guilty one for pushing Audi into the premium group for the first time with Mercedes and BMW. V8 became A8 in 1994, and current third generation is on the roads from 2010. In 2006 R8 took the role of the flagship model, but A8 still remains as an important player in the lineup, mostly as a prime indicator of Germans company latest technology and supreme luxury. Since latest generation is on the roads for seven years already, we had the opportunity to see a new one in making, strolling down the Nurburgring, representing what is future, the 2018 Audi A8.
CURRENT MODEL STRUGGLES
When current model was introduced in 2010, it was excessively conservative in its appearance even for rivals in those days. In 2013 Mercedes introduced current S-Class lifting design elegance and aristocracy to whole another level, while last year BMW introduced 7 Series looking more leaner and sportier than ever. Cadillac also joined the game in the same year with sharp and smart looking CT6, while new Lexus LS endangered Maserati Quattroporte’s title for gracious beauty concerning body shape. As a result, the new A8 has to bring more stuff to the game than the outgoing model did, and that may appear as tough for Audi keeping in mind their affinity to radical changes.
What we see from the pictures is that the new model is definitely slimmer compared to the current plumped shaped one and it received chopped headlights from their inner side, which correspond to latest design trend also featured in Q3, new Q5, and Q7. What is interesting is that the new grille is much wider than expected, engulfing the whole fascia and it features separator of lower and upper part. That is definitely something new and unexcepted in Audi‘s “Singleframe” design.
The rear seems to suffer from fewer changes, although with narrower and elongated lights. Despite visible diet, overall shape stays within current brand’s lines, mimic other sedans and it is questionable is that going to be good enough. The cabin is probably not going to experience many changes also, with possible introduction of touch sensitive surfaces replacing some buttons, as featured in Porsche’s Panamera, while the quality of materials and fit and finish could stay the same, as they are absolutely top notch.
2018 Audi A8 Engine
Nothing is officially known at this point, and it is hard to tell whether Germans are going to improve power figure part of current engines since they reduced the power of V6 in 2015 from 333 hp to 310 hp only to improve fuel efficiency by 1 mpg. Mentioned engine takes 5.5 seconds to 60 mph, while 4.0-liter, twin-turbo V-8 boosts 435 horsepower and 444 pound-feet of torque, hitting 60 mph in 4.7 seconds and finally 3.0-liter turbodiesel rated at 358 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque requires 6.4 seconds to 60 mph.
Mere king of them all is S8 Plus making 605 hp, 85 more than S without Plus, reaching 60 mph in just 3.3 seconds. So, the new version can go even better than that, and it doesn’t matter if there is no extra power, new MLB Evo platform is enough to provide enough progress since it dropped a tremendous amount of weight in new Q7.
2018 Audi A8 is presumably going to stick to its existing price tags, and if there is going to be any raise, it will be unnoticeable. The question is whether usual Audi’s ordinary styling is still enough to tackle Merc aristocracy, Beemer’s sporty elegance, and Lexus’s styling revolution. Restraint design will always have its buyers, especially in one of the