Audi R8 Spyder V10 muscles 540 hp into New York
Audi unveiled the new R8 Spyder V10 at the New York International Auto Show 2016 with the fury of a 3.6-second 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) fueled by 540 horsepower (397 kW). The car features a host of improvements to the R8 to build on the performance car's popularity.
The first Audi R8 was introduced in 2007, with the open-top Spyder version coming three years later. This new-generation R8 is based heavily on the Audi R8 Le Mans GT3, sharing about 50 percent parts content. The Coupe version of this new R8 was unveiled last year. This year marks the unveiling of the convertible Spyder model with its naturally-aspirated V10 engine being front and center.
The engine produces 540 hp and 398 lb.ft (540 Nm) of torque. Revs produce power all the way through 7,800 rpm. Peak kilowatts and Newtons are had at 6,500 rpm as the natural engine breaths into its 5,204 cubic centimeters of displacement.
Direct injection happens at the combustion chamber, but Audi added fuel injection into the induction manifold as well. This improves burn and thus performance, aiding the 0-200 km/h (124 mph) time of 11.8 seconds. Top speed is 197.6 mph (318 km/h) in the Spyder model. Audi says that exhaust flaps are now standard on the R8 V10, but an upgraded black tailpipe option will increase sound output from the pipes.
The upgraded power doesn't translate into poor fuel economy, however, as the new Audi R8 V10 Spyder utilizes cylinder-on-demand (COD) and dual injection to reduce fuel consumption in everyday driving. The S-tronic dual-clutch transmission has "freehweeling" mode,too, aiding in fuel economy by allowing the car to coast when it can. The Audi R8 Spyder V10 is capable of 11.7 liters per 100 kilometers (20.1 mpg US). The freewheeling mode is activated when the driver takes their foot off the accelerator at speeds over 34.2 mph (55 km/h), which decouples the engine from the drivetrain to "coast."
That drivetrain is all-wheel drive ("quattro") running through a seven-speed transmission. Twin clutches mean faster shifts. The front wheels are de-activated when not needed, allowing for rear-wheel only driving thanks to an electro-hydraulically activated multi-plate clutch. This also allows torque vectoring between wheels and axles through electronic controls. The whole system is water-cooled for higher performance. The rear axle has a differential lock for improved road behavior under high performance use.
The chassis and suspension are set on lightweight aluminum wishbones and steering is augmented with electro-mechanical assist. Steering ratios change according to the R8's speed, with torque input from the driver changing to coincide. Available active dampers work with these systems to improve ride and performance.
Standard wheels on the R8 Spyder V10 are 19-inch alloys fitted with 245/35 tires at the front and 295/35 at the rear. An optional upgrade sizes the wheels at 20 inches and fits 245/30 and 305/30 rubber front/rear. Eight-piston brake calipers sit on perforated wave-design discs on all four wheels. Carbon fiber brake discs are optional.
The dry weight of the 2017 Audi R8 Spyder V10 is just 3,553.9 pounds (1,612 kg), giving it a power-to-weight ratio of 8.6 lb (3.19 kg) per horsepower. The Audi R8's space frame construction and the heavy use of aluminum and carbon fiber are the reasons for the lighter weight. Compared to the previous model R8, the new space frame is both lighter and more rigid; adding 50 percent higher rigidity to the sports car.
Inside, the new interior for the Audi R8 is dominated by the large 12.3-inch infotainment monitor and the driver-centric control layout. A full suite of track-ready apps for recording times, outputs, and more can be found there. The multi-displays around the tachometer and speedometer in the instrument cluster can be customized, too. Otherwise, the complete gamut of Audi MMI apps and navigation infotainment inclusions are standard in the R8 Spyder. This includes Audi's new natural-language voice control system, which utilizes microphones set into the seatbelts for better audio pick-up.
The 2017 Audi R8 Spyder V10 adds Angus brown to its color pallet of ten available paint finishes. Customization for many body add-on components, such as diffusers and front spoiler, are avilable as well.