The second generation of Audi’s high-performance R8 sports car made its debut at the recent Geneva International Motor Show. While not much has changed from a design standpoint—its dimensions have increased slightly, giving the car more racecar-like proportions—the 2017 Audi R8 weighs about 100 pounds less than its predecessor. Two versions of the V-10 engine are available, offering 540 hp and 610 hp, respectively. With a maximum speed of 205 mph, the all-wheel-drive car can go from zero to 60 mph in less than 3.2 seconds. The company says these changes have made the 2017 R8 Audi’s fastest and most powerful car yet.
The 7-speed S tronic transmission has three automatic modes, which can be controlled manually. Drivers also have the choice of comfort, auto, dynamic, and individual modes through the drive-select dynamic handling system, which can be activated by a button on the steering wheel. Analog instruments in the cockpit have been replaced with digital displays that offer two different viewing modes. Audi’s MMI navigation and touch system is standard, complemented by the Audi connect module. Passengers can connect a smartphone or tablet to the system’s integrated Wi-Fi hotspot.
The new R8 is also the basis for two other models: the R8 e-tron, with a range of 279.6 miles, and the R8 LMS racecars. The 2017 R8 goes on sale this summer, with prices starting around $175,000. (audiusa.com)