The Drop-Top R8 Achieves Something Few Supercars Have: Comfort
Or: How to relax at 197 MPH
If there were a “practical” high-performance supercar, it’d be the new Audi R8 V10.
Practical not because it’s affordable, cargo-positive or family-friendly, but because there’s just enough room for you, your partner in crime and one mid-sized weekender bag. Not to say that it’s in any way mediocre.
After first being presented to the public in March, Audi invited the first test drivers to get behind the wheel this month, and early reviews indicate that the newly topless R8 offers pinpoint handling, tons of wind-your-hair panache and — here’s the kicker — it’s comfortable.
OK, OK, the ride might not be a Posturepedic, but it’s also not the park bench strapped to a rollercoaster that is a Lamborghini. The sticker price reads $388,5000, about $34,000 more than the coupe, but you’re paying for more structure, more weight (via bulked-up door sills with a thicker gauge aluminum and reinforcement on the A-pillars and windscreen) and less roof.
In the case of inclement weather or the desire to listen to a super embarrassing song, that roof goes up with the push of a button. Takes about 20 seconds and can be executed while in motion up to 30 MPH.
Comfortable as the Spyder may be, with that roof down, you shan’t forget you’re in a supercar. That sterling V10 emblem is Audi holding fast to not using turbos, and you can bet you’ll hear it roar … especially should you get the opportunity to break your neck topping it out at its max speed of 197 mph.
If you want to throw some money on top of some money, additional options include gloss carbon inlays, LED laser lights, an alternate steering wheel, 20’ black alloys (YES), a grip of driver assistance tech and ceramic brakes.
Any sharper and it would be made for the track.
Any more comfortable and it would be made for someone with a day job.