2014 Audi R8 V10 Plus Coupe quattro S Tronic (5.2L V10, AWD, 7-Speed Automated Manual)
Driven On 4/30/2013
Powered by a 5.2-liter V10 making 550 horsepower, the Audi R8 V10 Plus is the pinnacle of Audi's performance aspirations. The R8 is confident, fast, rewarding and the new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission makes the automatic a valid option. Some compromises are made due to the R8's size and nature, but you knew that looking at it.
PerformanceThe Audi R8 V10 Plus was made to go very, very fast and has all the tools to do it very well. Easy to drive, but thoroughly rewarding, the R8 is truly a driver's car.
The 550-horsepower R8 V10 Plus gets to 60 mph in 3.4 seconds and it couldn't be any easier. Effortless, endless, smooth acceleration with ultra-quick gearshifts. Phenomenal noises.
The V10 Plus has carbon-ceramic discs that show no signs of fade. The pedal is firm and reassuring, but not jumpy. Easy to modulate and easy to use on the road.
If we're nit-picking, the steering on the V10 Plus is heavier than is necessary. Still, remarkably direct and quick-acting. The flat-bottomed wheel isn't great in the real world.
The R8 is silly-fast with awesome grip and predictable dynamics. Easy and rewarding to drive exceptionally fast. Electronic stability control allows some fun, but still saves.
The new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission "fixes" the R8 S tronic. The old automatic was jittery and abrupt, this is as smooth as any other dual-clutch. Icing on the cake.
ComfortThe R8 V10 Plus tries to split the difference between sports and GT car and does so with aplomb. A stiff ride and a bit of noise are par for the course in this segment and part of the draw.
The R8's seats are decently adjustable and super-supportive, but they're tight. The R8 is not a car for large drivers. The new diamond-stitched seat material is beautiful.
Audi's adjustable suspension does a commendable job at balancing all-out handling and daily-driving duties, but the R8 is still stiff. This is not a Bentley.
As expected, there's a good deal of noise from the massive tires and even more from the big V10. Nearly all of the noises are good, it's just not very quiet.
InteriorLike most Audis these days, the 2014 R8 V10 plus is very well built. Unfortunately, the small cabin means limited space and accesibility, and the infotainment system is a step behind.
Some last-generation Audi electronics take up residence in Audi's flagship. MMI is tricky to use in this application and some of the basic controls are hard to reach due to space.
In a price/performance segment that ostensibly contains the Porsche 911, the R8 is a difficult car to get into and out of. Low, deep buckets and huge doors are the rub.
Even for a supercar, the R8 is tight. The cockpit is narrow especially in the shoulders, but allows a ton of leg and headroom. Taller drivers should be fine.
When you're sitting so low in the car, the doors, hood and rear of the car all hamper visibility. Forward visibility is strong, and with 550hp, that's what matters.
The R8 has a maximum cargo capacity of 5.3 cubic feet. Anything you put in the front cargo area will get very hot due the placement of the R8's radiators. Interior storage is laughable.
ValueThe 2014 Audi R8 V10 competes in a very high price bracket and has the performance and looks to back that up.
Build Quality (vs. $)
Typical Audi build quality. Very good materials and execution, though one might expect more R8-specific features and fewer Audi parts-bin bits.
The features you're paying for here are the V10, the race-bred brakes and the go-fast capabilities. And the R8 is priced right for these features.
As equipped, this car was $188,995. That's slightly more than a Porsche 911 Turbo S and slightly less than a Ferrari 458.
According to the EPA, the R8 V10 gets 13 mpg city and 22 mpg highway. Real drivers should expect lower.
The R8 V10 Plus has a 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, and a 4-year/50,000-mile powertrain warranty.
One year/5,000 miles of free maintenance is available on the R8.
Fun To DriveBeyond any metrics, the R8 V10 is a joy to drive. It's loud and fast and little kids think you're Iron Man.
The R8 experience starts the second you see it in the driveway and just gets better. From the first engine-rev to full-throttle shifts, driving this car is an event.
Tony Stark drove one. Need more personality than that?