The fourth-generation Audi A8 has been spied undergoing testing on the Nurburgring Nordschleife.
Even with this prototype’s head to toe camouflage, we can see that the new large sedan is heavily influenced by the Prologue series of concept cars. At the front end, there’s a wide, sharply defined single-frame grille flanked by an angular pair of headlights.
While the sides are pretty flat, they’re enlivened somewhat by an upward sweep above the sills. Around the back, the new A8 sports a thin strip of dark-tinted, possibly wraparound, tail-lights.
Under the skin, the new A8 uses the latest MLB component set for front- and all-wheel-drive cars with longitudinal engines. This will likely be paired with the A8’s signature aluminium spaceframe.
Last month, Rupert Stadler, Audi’s chairman, confirmed that the new A8 will make its debut in 2017 and will feature Traffic Jam Pilot, Audi’s new semi-autonomous driving system that can pilot the car on a motorway at speeds up to 60km/h.
The engine lineup for the new A8 will likely include V6, V8 and W12 petrol engines, and V6 and V8 turbo-diesels. These will be joined later by a plug-in hybrid drivetrain.
In addition to the usual standard- and long-wheelbase sedans, the new A8 may spawn an extra-long-wheelbase variant, as well as a coupe derivative.