- Impressive performance, open-top allure
- Claims 0-100km/h zapped in 3.5sec/318km/h
- Cloth roof opens or closes in 20sec
LOS ANGELES, California – Audi of America has dropped the top on the second generation R8 V10 Spyder and its 402kW / 549Nm engine that makes the 2017 R8 Spyder faster and more powerful than its predecessor.
The car – basically a soft-top convertible version of the R8 V10 Coupe – is expected in South Africa in April 2017.
The cloth roof – Audi describes it as “light” – is complemented by an added lower sideblade which, the automaker believes, “enhances the Spyder’s strikingly athletic design”.
Both versions ride on a new aluminium / carbon-fibre backbone and, as did its predecessor, the interior has a race-car cockpit with easy-to-operate controls and functions – among them the fully digital Audi “virtual cockpit”.
Also like the R8 V10 Coupe, the Spyder shares its basic design with the R8 LMS GT3 race car and as a result has collected significant performance gains over its predecessor.
The soft top operates electro-hydraulically at a road speed up to 50km/h and the assembly weight what Audi describes as “only 43kg” to help keep the car’s centre of gravity close to the tar. Operation is launched with a button on the centre console and the frame/cloth folds into a flat compartment over the engine.
LAUNCH CONTROL, TOO
The R8 V10 Spyder’s 5.2-litre engine drives a seven-speed S-tronic dual-clutch transmission and can rev safely to 8700 rpm while shifting the car from rest to 100km/h a tenth of a second faster than the previous R8 V10 Spyder.
The transmission incorporates for a launch control programme with an automated clutch.
Dynamic steering selects a steering ratio suited to the vehicle’s speed and transmission program. At high speed a less-direct steering ratio helps creates a stable drive; go slower and a more-direct steering ratio accelerates steering response for easier maneuvering.
All the power and drive settings mean, of course, all-wheel drive so the new R8 Spyder has a new and unique quattro system. Default setting is to the rear wheels but the Spyder can send all its torque to the front wheels only should condition demand it.
Similar to the R8 V10 Coupe, the interior is defined by a monoposto, a large arc that pays homage to the shape of a race-car cockpit through driver-orientated, easy-to-operate controls and functions.
Behind the steering-wheel is an Audi “virtual” cockpit that features a large and high-resolution 31cm display.
Additional design highlights include:
- Singleframe three-dimensional honeycomb grille
- Diodes light head, tail and daytime lights and indicators
- 19” five-V-spoked cast aluminum wheel rims
- Heatable and 18-way adjustable power sport seats
- Three-spoked multifunction flat-bottom steering-wheel with shift paddles and satellite buttons
- Bang & Olufsen 500W sound with 13 speakers
The Spyder also has Audi Connect with 4G LTE connectivity, internet radio and a Wi-Fi hotspot for the passenger, Google Earth and satnav whose info is displayed across the entire virtual cockpit.
Audi America has priced the convertible at $175 100 – about R2.36-milion.