2009 Audi R8

2009 Audi R8 Pictures & Specifications
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Technical Specifications

Make: Audi
Model: R8 4.2 FSI Quattro
Engine: 4.2 litre V8
Aspiration: Natural
Maximum Power: 309 kW (420 hp) @ 7800 rpm
Maximum Torque: 317 lb-ft (430 Nm) @ 4500 rpm
Transmission: Six-speed manual or optional sequential R tronic
Drivetrain: All-wheel drive

The Audi R8

Audi Press Release
January 2009

With its high-performance sports car, the R8, Audi took the lead immediately in the most demanding automobile market segment. The 309 kW (420 hp) V8 FSI engine, quattro permanent all-wheel drive and the body built according to the Audi Space Frame principle secured the R8 an outstanding position. Its fascinating personality is rounded off by a high level of suitability for day-to-day driving and the perfection in materials and workmanship for which Audi is renowned.

Concept and design
After the rally successes achieved by the revolutionary Audi quattro and its triumphs in touring car racing, Audi has now begun to write a new chapter in motor sport history with the R8 racing car. Five wins in the Le Mans 24-hour race have made the R8 the most successful sport prototype ever to compete there. In a total of 80 further starts at races all over the world, this top performer has emerged victorious on 63 occasions.

This multiple champion was the perfect platform for the new Audi production sports car. Together with the R8 name, its genes were transmitted to the road model. The mid-engine concept is part of its heritage, like the high-revving V8 engine with FSI direct gasoline injection and the R tronic sequential shift gearbox. Racing rules prohibit the use of quattro all-wheel drive for race cars, but the production R8 features it as standard, hence its superior road dynamics and safety.

There are design parallels too, not just in the functional objective of managing the aerodynamics supremely even at very high speeds. The design team that shaped the race car continued its good work when the design of the road car had to be finalised. Of course such aerodynamic features as the Le Mans cars’ mighty wing had to be abandoned – instead, the R8 expresses its sporty competence with a body that displays typical Audi elegance in every line.

The R8’s stance on the road is broad-based and stable, with powerful proportions, emphatic wheel arches and air inlets of ample size all demonstrating its performance potential. This is an Audi such as has never been seen before. Determining the clear proportions of this mid-engine car are the cabin positioned well forward with the engine immediately behind. A characteristic feature of the side view of the R8 is the “sideblade”, which acts as an air spoiler and also visually emphasises the engine position.

Audi’s aerodynamics experts worked so thoroughly on the R8 that the body always generates the necessary amount of downthrust – in contrast to many other sports cars. This naturally increases dynamic stability at high speeds. It is achieved by the extendable rear spoiler, but mostly due to the fully clad underbody diffuser.

Yet above all, the R8 is still first and foremost an Audi, even if the characteristic single-frame front grille for the first time doesn’t carry the familiar four rings. They are given even more emphasis on the hood above it. Typical of Audi are the tendency for the lines of the body to be reduced, though without losing their precision, the sweeping arc of the roof and the full-length contour that can be traced from the front airdam, over the wheel arches and flanks of the body, to the rear end. This “loop” incorporates the air intakes as well as headlamps and tail lights.

The passion for elaborate lighting equipment design is another typical Audi trait. The standard xenon plus headlights and the daytime running lights with twelve LEDs each give the R8 an unmistakable face. Nor is anyone likely to mistake Audi’s sports car when seen from the rear: these LED rear lights are the first to be given a three-dimensional visual effect.

For an absolute highlight, however, we need look no farther than the all-LED headlights, an optional extra available on the Audi R8 for the first time on any production car. These innovative light units, with their lenses and reflectors, not only look breathtaking, they also possess an immense functional advantage: with a colour temperature of 6,000 Kelvin, the light from these 24 diodes is much closer to regular daylight than xenon or halogen light. During night driving, therefore, the driver’s eyes suffer much less fatigue.

With its captivating outlines, the R8 was bound to be a winner. When the experts met to present the “World Car of the Year Awards 2008”, it scored a double victory – as “World Performance Car” and as “World Car Design of the Year”, inheriting the latter award directly from the Audi TT.

A sports car body must be especially light and rigid. The Audi Space Frame body, made from aluminium, provides the ideal basis for this. Audi has more know-how than any other automobile manufacturer in the world on the design and production of cars using aluminium. It has now concentrated all this cumulative experience in the R8.

The Audi R8 bodyshell weighs only 210 kilograms (462.97 lb), and in terms of weight-saving quality represents an absolute best value among the sports cars with which it competes. It consists of extruded sections, sheet aluminium elements and highly complex cast nodes; these constituents are held together by 99 meters (324.80 ft) of weld seams, 782 self-piercing rivets and 308 self-tapping screws.

At the Audi plant in Neckarsulm, Germany, where the R8 is largely hand-built, this structure is worked on by precise measuring and processing tools. For instance, a laser measuring rig checks 220 points on each body to within tenths of a millimetre, and a computer tomograph can examine the quality of each joint down to tolerances of a few microns.

A central machining unit mills and drills all the 52 connecting points between the running gear and the steering in a single operation. This assures maximum precision in the geometrical alignment.

The interior offers that desirable racing feeling, but with a high level of luxury at the same time. Its design is no less sporty and elegant than the body. The characteristic element is the so-called ‘monoposto’, a large arc encompassing the steering wheel and instruments; it provides the driver with a direct, visceral connection to the car. The exceptionally high quality of craftsmanship is very impressive. The cockpit and door trim surfaces are neatly lined, with accurate decorative stitching. Scope for customisation, incidentally, is so enormous that surely every R8 owner’s wishes, however unusual, will be satisfied. Carbon fibre and leather in a very wide range of colours are just the starting point.

The generous space in the interior is just one of the features that explain the exceptional everyday functionality of the R8. The key to this abundant space is the 2.65 meter (8.69 ft) wheelbase. No matter what the driver’s or passenger’s stature, in the R8 they will find their ideal seating position. Even all-round visibility is very good for a mid-engine car, with narrow A-posts permitting an optimised field of view diagonally forward. An important factor for day-to-day practicability is the trunk: 100 litres (3.53 cubic feet) are available under the front hood and another 90 litres (3.18 cubic feet) behind the seats (Audi can supply handmade luggage sets). Two golf bags can also be accommodated.

The R8’s V8 engine is not only a compact design: it has no difficulty at all in soaring up the rev band to speeds as high as 8,250 rpm. The reward for this is an output of 309 kW (420 hp) and a maximum torque of 430 Nm (317.15 lb-ft) between 4,500 and 6,000 rpm, which in turn guarantees an immense flow of power. Performance on the road is correspondingly impressive: the R8 rockets from 0 to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in just 4.6 seconds, whether with manual transmission or with R tronic sequential gearshift. The needle hits 200 km/h (124.27 mph) after just 14.9 seconds, and the engine’s thrust is only equalled by rolling resistance and aerodynamic drag at 301 km/h (187.03 mph). The V8 produces an excitingly full and differentiated sound at all times.

Using sophisticated fine-tuning, the Audi engineers eliminated any unpleasant vibration frequencies and then orchestrated an impressive opus from the intake and exhaust sounds.

The engine has dry sump lubrication, a typical racing engine feature that helps to keep the engine’s installed position low but ensure consistent oil supply even in the toughest driving conditions, for instance on the racetrack. FSI direct injection provides the basis for the excellent full-load performance, with a highly efficient combustion process.

The R8 has a six-speed gearbox, either with clutch and manual shift or with the automated R tronic shift. This hi-tech system is an entirely new development. It is faster than even the most experienced driver, and communicates authentic race-car feeling with its shift paddles at the steering wheel. R tronic tackles even racing-style starts effortlessly, thanks to its Launch Control program.

The quattro permanent all-wheel drive system provides that decisive extra traction and driving safety. It has been matched carefully to the car’s mid-engine layout with its ideal axle load distribution of 44 to 56 percent, and supplies between 10 and 35 percent of the power from the engine to the front wheels according to actual needs.

Running gear
The Audi R8 sports car’s precision suspension handles dynamic sports performance just as well as more relaxed cross-country driving at lower speeds. The R8 responds impeccably to the driver’s steering movements, with maximum safety always the top priority. The wheels are located by double lateral control arms at the front and rear, with the settings optimised for neutral self-steering effect and full, effortless control.

As an optional extra for the R8, Audi supplies an innovative form of damping technology: this adapts the characteristic to the topography of the road and the driver’s style within a few thousandths of a second. The braking power necessary to slow down the R8 comes from a brake system of ample size and capacity, with no fewer than 24 pistons gripping the four ventilated brake disks. The optional ceramic brake disks represent an additional gain in reliable braking performance: even when the R8 is driven in an extreme racing style, they show no tendency to fade.

Equipment and trim
The Audi R8 combines its supreme performance not only with a surprising degree of day-to-day practicality, but also with exclusive equipment. None the less, there is a list of optional extras containing additional highlights – for instance many forms of interior customisation, the Audi parking system advanced with integral rearview camera or the superb sound system from Bang & Olufsen for exceptional music listening pleasure. Electrically adjustable seats provide a touch of luxury or, in complete contrast, sports bucket seats from the Audi exclusive program instill pure racing atmosphere into the R8.

The Audi R8 at a glance:
Engine: displacement 4,163 cc, output 309 kW (420 hp) at 7,800 rpm, max. torque 430 Nm (317.15 lb-ft) from 4,500 to 6,000 rpm. Performance and fuel consumption (with R tronic): 0 – 100 km/h (0 – 62.14 mph) in 4.6 s, top speed 301 km/h (187.03 mph), fuel consumption (combined) 13.6 liters/100 km (17.30 US mpg) of Super Plus gasoline. Drivetrain combination: quattro with six-speed manual transmission or six-speed R tronic.

The equipment, specifications, and prices stated herein refer to the model range offered for sale in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted.


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