Options overload: Audi launch 'pinnacle' R8 V10 supercar
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Have you ever wondered what an R8 supercar would look like after it's kitted out with all the best bits from Audi's parts department? Well you don't have to imagine anymore with the release of the Audi Sport Performance Parts R8 Edition, an awkwardly named, ultra-limited 'pinnacle' R8 that could possibly be the last hurrah for Audi's naturally aspirated V10.
The Audi Sport Performance Parts Edition will be the most capable and track-focused R8 to date, equipped with motorsport-proven enhancements inspired from Audi's GT3 and GT4 program that save weight and increase downforce to give the 5.2-litre V10 even freer rein to shine.
Audi say the new model represents the 'pinnacle of R8 performance' with exclusivity guaranteed for the company's most devoted customers as as only 44 will be built.
Only five will go to the UK in right hand drive form and each priced at £176,560, a cool £54k more than a standard R8 Coupe. No New Zealand pricing was announced, but the limited R8 is available to order from any Audi Sport dealer worldwide.
Read more: Audi R8 road test
Audi reckon the performance changes bring the R8's genetic links to motorsport into sharper focus visually and dynamically with greatly improved cornering ability at high speed.
The easiest change to spot is the aero kit. Audi Sport Performance Parts Edition R8s feature an all-new front bumper, splitter, side skirts, large rear wing and diffuser are all made from carbon fibre reinforced plastic, saving weight and producing much more downforce.
At 155km/h the new aero kit develops 52kg of downforce, double that of a standard R8 Coupe. But at the R8's top speed of 330km/h, the new kit generates 250kg of downforce, over 100kg more than a standard model.
New milled multi-spoke black 20-inch wheels save another 8kg of weight and reduce unsprung mass. They are shod with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres with a 245/30 profile upfront and 305/30 profile at the rear.
Read more: Rear-wheel drive R8 V10 is Audi's purist yet
A lightweight three-way coilover suspension setup is also fitted for full adjustability on road and track. Ceramic brake discs fitted to the front and rear feature a titanium backing plate to further reduce vehicle weight and work with specially enhanced brake pads for more stopping power and tougher fade resistance.
Apart from an optional Audi R8 sport exhaust, the 5.2-litre engine remains untouched, with the V10 producing 449kW of power at over 8000rpm and 560Nm of torque at 6500rpm.
In the cabin, the limited R8 is fitted with perforated Nappa leather bucket seats and a sport steering wheel trimmed in Alcantara with a red 12 o’clock marker. Audi's Viritual Cockpit dash is complemented with new features like the Audi Smartphone Interface, a rear view camera, Navigation and Audi connect online services.
The Audi Sport Performance Parts R8 Editions are offered by Audi Sport on a strictly first come, first served basis via select Audi Centres worldwide.