The Audi R8 Rear-wheel drive versions which were previously offered on a limited production run back in 2018, have now been made a permanent fixture in the R8’s lineup. The rear wheel drive Coupe and Spyder join the R8 performance Quattro Coupe and Spyder. The cars have been updated in tandem with the 2021 design enhancements, the Singleframe grille features the honeycomb design with R8 badging, while the Performance model gets carbon finish side blades, mirror housing and rear spoiler.
The R8 Performance comes with 20in wheels in titanium finish with an optional anthracite color. The brake callipers come in red, blue or the standard gray, while the rear-wheel drive version gets glossy black finish on the front blade, side sill inserts and rear diffuser along with a Mythos Black finish on the side blades and chrome finish on the rear exhaust tips. The 2021 R8 model features Standard LED lights all around, with Audi Laser light which is operational above 40mph and supplements the LED headlamps standard on the V10 performance model while being an option for the RWD models.
On the inside, the central console is driver oriented, standard racing seats, standard Audi virtual cockpit, Audi phone box with signal booster and MMI navigation plus. The R8 Performance model gets Mercanto blue diamond contrast stitch for the seats, Black Alcantara shift lever along with blue brake callipers. The RWD gets 14-way powered sport seats stitched in Nappa leather, and an optional Premium package adds 18-way adjustable seats with side and leg bolsters, Alcantara headliner, 550 W Bang and Olufsen sound system with 13 speakers and illuminated door sills.
The soft-top uses an electrohydraulic drive system to raise or lower the roof in 20 seconds and can be done while in motion up to speeds of 31mph, the roof weights only 91 pounds and adds to the lower center of gravity. A power window is deployed in the rear to keep out the winds and can be lowered to enjoy the naturally aspirated V10.
The V10 in the performance model makes 602hp and 413lbft of torque and is able to accelerate the car from standstill to 60mph in 3.2 seconds and all the way up to a blistering 205mph. The Seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch transmission is accurate and is able to shift gears in as much as 120 milliseconds. The Audi dynamic steering offers a variable steering ratio which automatically adjusts itself based on speed and driving mode.
The RWD R8 is no slouch in comparison to the performance model, with the 5.2l FSI V10 pumping 532hp and 398lb-ft of torque, the 0-60 time is 3.6 seconds(3.7 for the spyder) and has a slightly lower top speed of 201mph. The RWD while having lower power jolts itself against the performance version because of the lower weight thanks to discarding parts like the prop shaft, front axles, multi-plate clutch, and front differential.
The chassis on the RWD has been tuned for rear wheel driving, with solid rear axles, a stiffer anti-roll bar and increased rear negative camber. The electromechanical power steering, which is free of torque steer is precise and gives ample feedback. The car uses the experience gained by Audi each year when it competes in various races including the endurance championship which makes the R8 a very reliable car with top-notch performance figures.
2021 Audi R8 manufacturer suggested retail prices:
|2021 Audi R8 V10 Coupe RWD||$142,700|
|2021 Audi R8 V10 Spyder RWD||$154,900|
|2021 Audi R8 V10 performance Coupe quattro||$196,700|
|2021 Audi R8 V10 performance Spyder quattro||$208,900|
Prices exclude $1,495 destination charge, $1,700 gas guzzler tax ($2,100 gas guzzler tax on performance models), sales taxes, title, options, and dealer charges. Dealer sets actual price.
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