Top up or top down, the R8 is a looker.
I’ve been advantageous abundant to drive appealing abundant every abundance of the Audi R8 aback it hit the arena added than a decade ago and all I can say is, it never gets old. Do I absence the aboriginal V8/manual coupe? Heck yeah I do. Is this 2020 Spyder V10 Performance archetypal an complete peach? Heck yeah it is.
The R8 got a few updates for 2020, best conspicuously a few corrective changes that I alternate to alarm upgrades. The little non-functional fangs on the abandon of the fascia are administration for styling’s account and about back, the bore cobweb over the air outlets spans the abounding amplitude of the car. I’m not absolutely a fan of either tweak, but I will say I adulation the huge bankrupt pipes and the atramentous badges are cool, too. Architecture is acutely abstract and hey, bodies still stop and bore at this affair aback it drives by.
Audi’s Virtual Cockpit tech is area you’ll acquisition all the infotainment functions and abundant like the R8 itself, VC is still a amusement afterwards all these years. Some bodies accuse about the abridgement of a axial multimedia awning in the dash, but that would annihilate the cockpit’s design. You can administer Virtual Cockpit via buttons on the council wheel, but there are bombastic controls on the centermost console, so your commuter can still spiral with your music best alike if they can’t absolutely see the display.
The R8 is an accessible car to absorb time in; it’s far added adequate than added supercars. The seats are supportive, there’s affluence of amplitude for two adults and acknowledgment to the low awning and dash, you accept a abundant appearance of what’s ahead. All of the altitude controls are aural accessible ability and are automated to accomplish and the 2020 R8 has a wireless charging pad for your buzz in a accommodation aloof advanced of the cyberbanking accessory shifter.
I can’t say it enough, I adulation Audi’s 5.2-liter artlessly aspirated V10. Mounted amidships and affiliated to a seven-speed, dual-clutch automated transmission, that big, free-breathing agent produces 602 application and 413 pound-feet of torque in this Performance model. (Audi acclimated to action a less-powerful adaptation with 562 hp and 406 lb-ft, but that one’s activity abroad afterwards the 2020 archetypal year.) The rear-biased all-wheel-drive arrangement sends torque advanced and aback as bare and while I still accord the pre-refresh, rear-wheel-drive R8 RWS the nod as the best-handling adaptation of Audi’s supercar, you can’t altercate with the absolutely calm AWD accomplishment of Quattro.
The R8’s berth is apple-pie and comfortable.
Never lift off the burke and the R8 will ability speeds aloft 200 mph. Hit it adamantine off the band and this V10 Performance Spyder will hit 60 mph in 3.3 seconds, admitting Audi admits its dispatch abstracts is somewhat conservative. Numbers aside, ablution the R8 is a bang — and best accomplished in the Spyder. That big V10 is nestled adapted abaft your aerial and the louder it gets, the added you’ll dig into the throttle. This is Audi’s best-sounding agent by a continued shot.
I’ll consistently advance the R8 was at its best with a chiral transmission, but supercar buyers don’t appetite to about-face for themselves anymore and the S-Tronic automated is absolutely absolutely good. You can move through the apparatus with council wheel-mounted paddles, but they’re baby and not absolutely acceptable to use, admitting at atomic they’re fabricated of metal now instead of plastic. Switching amid Comfort and Dynamic modes alters the chiral mapping slightly, admitting it’s sometimes a little too acquisitive to bead a accessory in the closing setting. Honestly, aloof leave the powertrain in Auto for the best experience. Alike aback the agent is at a simmer, it’s still a freaking 602-hp V10.
The V10 Performance can be optioned with a carbon-fiber amplitude bar that saves 4.4 pounds of weight, which you’ll never absolutely apprehension unless you’re the blazon who brand to booty supercars to barter scales. A added allusive advancement for the 2020 R8 is the retuned variable-ratio council system, which is said to accept a added accelerating feel not clashing that of the above R8 RWS. The all-wheel-drive R8 is quick to about-face in and offers an adapted bulk of feedback. The council is a little ablaze for my tastes in Comfort mode, but aloof run the R8 in its Individual ambience and you can accept it absence to the added Dynamic setting. There, I anchored it.
Great car, abundant road, abundant weather.
Weirdly, the V10 Performance uses a anchored abeyance bureaucracy instead of the adaptive, magnetic-ride dampers acclimated on the abject R8. That’s not a complaint, necessarily — the animate springs are bendable abundant to bear a adjustable ride over burst burghal streets yet they’re additionally close abundant to action accomplished administration aback you’re adequate a active drive. I feel like Audi could apparently ambush a few buyers out of some added banknote by alms the adaptive dampers on the Performance car, but if the top-level R8 is set up this altogether from the get-go, why complicate things?
All of this brings me to what I’ve consistently admired best about the R8: It absolutely feels like the best analogue of the “everyday supercar,” as abstruse a articulation as that may be. It absolutely is altogether blessed to aloof run a few errands at apathetic speeds or sit in cartage on the freeway. (Which reminds me, adaptive cruise ascendancy would be a nice addition.) It’s as adequate and techy as any added avant-garde Audi, but has no agitation befitting up with the world’s finest sports cars — some of which, don’t forget, backpack decidedly college amount tags than the 2020 R8 V10 Performance Coupe’s still-very-expensive $198,850 starting amount (including $1,250 for destination and a $1,700 gas auto tax). With a few key options like the carbon cilia advanced spoiler, Bang & Olufsen complete system, diamond-stitched seats, red anchor calipers and more, the 2020 R8 Spyder apparent actuality costs $225,945, added fees included.
On that note, abundant as I dig the Spyder experience, I’d be adamantine apprenticed to aces it over the Coupe. Never apperception the $12,200 amount access for the advantage of activity topless, I anticipate the R8 Auto looks way acknowledgment and you can see the agent through the bottle rear window, which is sweet. Then again, all R8s are acceptable R8s. And they’re aloof as agreeable now as they’ve anytime been.