Audi A8 Review & Features

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2018 Audi A8
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2019 Audi A8 Debuts With an Emphasis on Technology

In a packed convention hall in Barcelona, Audi unveiled its flagship luxury sedan, the fourth-generation 2019 A8. The company proudly proclaimed it will feature a Level 3 automated driving system as it marches toward the goal of a fully autonomous vehicle. According to the Society of Automotive Engineers, Level 3 automation is "the driving mode-specific performance by an automated driving system of all aspects of the dynamic driving task with the expectation that the human driver will respond appropriately to a request to intervene." That means with a touch of a button, the new A8 will be capable of driving itself when certain conditions are met. If those conditions change, the driver will receive alerts that intervention will be needed. We have it on good authority that the driver will have 10 seconds to respond, which is a generous amount of time.

Dubbed "Audi Piloted Driving," this system will theoretically be effective at speeds up to 60 km/h, or 37.3 mph. We say theoretically because the legality of these systems are still being hashed out worldwide. In the U.S., individual states will be responsible for setting guidelines for automated and autonomous vehicles, so Piloted Driving availability will depend on location. If approved, the A8 will be one of the leaders in what most experts refer to as the next great automotive frontier.

Besides Piloted Driving, the 2019 A8 is all-new from nose to tail. The design adopts Audi's current design language, featuring a bold trapezoidal grille up front and a sharply creased character line all the way down the side. In the back will be a striking band of OLED taillights that will perform a mini light show as the driver approaches. Audi's reputation for simple sophistication is on display inside the A8, with a wide horizontal dash and only the most basic of switches and knobs present. The majority of functions will be controlled via two large touchscreens in the center stack.

The loss of Audi's MMI controller knob is somewhat concerning since it is one of the better systems on the market, but we'll hold final judgment until we get to drive the A8. Though we currently prefer the knob-based controllers, this new touchscreen system shows promise with large configurable buttons and a simulated click to confirm each touch. You have to be very deliberate with touch commands, pushing fairly hard in order to trigger a function. This will hopefully eliminate inadvertent commands caused by accidentally brushing the screens.

Mechanically, the new A8 builds on existing technologies. An advanced active suspension will function much like Mercedes-Benz's Magic Body Control, using a laser scanner on the road ahead and adjusting each individual wheel to react to imperfections. In theory, potholes and bumps will no longer be felt as the car glides unaffected over them. A four-wheel steering system will also be available, enhancing maneuverability at all speeds and contributing to the Audi AI Remote Parking Pilot system. Once activated, the driver can direct the A8 to park itself in a spot without ever having to be in the car, and command it to exit the spot as well.

As far as engines go, the A8 will debut with a turbocharged V6 gasoline engine in a mild hybrid system. A V8 model will follow, as will a plug-in hybrid and a range-topping W12. Expect to see the 2019 Audi A8 in U.S. showrooms in mid- to late 2018 with prices starting around the $100,000 mark.

Audi A8 Review

The flagship Audi A8 is a full-size luxury sedan meant to appeal to wealthy consumers looking for maximum luxury and space. Although competing models from the premium German and Japanese marques may sell in greater numbers, the A8 does possess a distinct advantage because of its aluminum frame and body panels. Significantly lighter than a traditional steel structure, the Audi Space Frame (ASF), as it's called, helps offset the weight of the car's Quattro all-wheel-drive system; the A8's competitors are primarily rear-wheel drive.

Thanks to Quattro, winter weather capability is one of the Audi A8's strengths. Luxurious accommodations are another, particularly with the last couple of generations. As with other Audis, understated luxury and cutting-edge electronics combine to form an experience that delivers refinement in abundance. Though it's sometimes overlooked, the A8 is a fine choice for a luxury flagship.

Current Audi A8
The Audi A8 is a full-size luxury sedan available in standard and long-wheelbase ("L") forms. Even with standard all-wheel drive (AWD), the A8 still weighs less than most of its rear-wheel-drive rivals, let alone those fitted with optional AWD. The A8's AWD system has a rear-biased power split, which helps to provide a sportier feel akin to a rear-drive performance sedan.

There are six trim levels: 3.0T, L 3.0T, L 3.0 TDI, 4.0T, L 4.0T and L W12. The 3.0T trims have a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 with 333 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque. Like all A8 engines, it runs through an eight-speed automatic transmission. The 4.0T trims have a turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 that makes 420 hp and 444 lb-ft. The W12 features a 6.3-liter 12-cylinder engine that cranks out 500 hp and 463 lb-ft. �In addition to these gas-fueled powerhouses, there is the 3.0 TDI, a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 rated at 240 hp and 406 lb-ft. Regardless of engine choice, acceleration is swift, with the 0-60-mph sprint ranging from around 4.2 seconds to 6.3. Fuel economy is also notable, with the TDI in particular rated at an impressive 28 mpg combined.

Of course the A8 comes loaded with all the latest high-tech features. Highlights include a dynamic steering system that can intervene with automatic countersteering in a slide, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability, automatic emergency braking, and night vision with thermal imaging and pedestrian detection. Audi's MMI electronics interface features an additional touchpad interface that reads fingertip gestures as letters and commands. Google Earth mapping for the navigation system is another A8 exclusive.

Beyond the sumptuous cabin, which features front and rear seats that can be adjusted in a multitude of ways, there's also the big sedan's impressive ride and handling characteristics. The ride is comfortable without excessive float over bumps. When pressed on a curvy road, the A8 proves surprisingly agile, with nicely weighted steering. Rear seat room is ample in the regular-wheelbase model, while the A8 L provides more than enough legroom for a pair of 6-footers.

The A8 undoubtedly lacks the name recognition and styling flair of its fellow Germans, but don't let that stop you from giving it strong consideration. With its roomy, best-in-class cabin and excellent driving dynamics, this luxury sedan shines as one of the strongest picks in its segment.

Used Audi A8 Models
The current A8 represents the third generation in the model's history, debuting in 2011. In that inaugural year, the sole engine was a 4.2-liter V8 engine with 372 hp and 328 lb-ft of torque. The following year brought the 6.3-liter W12. For 2013, the 4.2-liter was dropped, while both the supercharged V6 and turbocharged V8 seen in the current lineup debuted. Apart from lacking the TDI engine option and some minor differences in standard and optional equipment, these latter A8s are otherwise essentially identical to today's version.

The previous, second-generation Audi A8 was sold from 2004-'10. Relative to its predecessor, this generation offered a lighter chassis and a more muscular V8, along with lots of comfort, safety and suspension upgrades. This A8 was offered in both standard-wheelbase (A8) and long-wheelbase (A8 L) versions. The base engine was a 4.2-liter V8 that generated 335 hp and later rose to 350 hp for 2007. A six-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive were standard. From 2005-'09, there was an A8 L W12 model that featured a 6.0-liter 12-cylinder engine that produced 450 hp.

Changes were light during this generation. There were slight styling alterations for '08, while the equipment list was bolstered nearly every model year. Regardless of which year you may be considering here, cabin furnishings were superb and the MMI interface made accessing the car's numerous audio, climate and navigation functions fairly easy. This A8 was often overlooked by luxury sedan shoppers, but we always found it to be a great alternative and certainly equal to other flagships in terms of luxury, performance and craftsmanship.

The first-generation Audi A8 was offered from 1997-2003. Although it was one of the most technologically advanced cars on the market by virtue of its aluminum frame, it never had its successor's flair for style or performance. Understated in its adornments inside and out, the original A8 failed to deliver the over-the-top ambience that's so important for high-dollar luxury sedans sold in the United States. However, if you like the idea of owning a discreet luxury car, you can buy a used A8 for considerably less than you'd pay for a used BMW 7 Series or Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

Early Audi A8s were offered only with a 113-inch wheelbase, which meant that their backseats were cramped compared to the other full-size luxury sedans. The longer and roomier A8 L arrived for the 2000 model year and would be our pick if you're planning to carry adults in back. Most first-generation A8s were sold with a 4.2-liter V8 and Quattro all-wheel drive. Thusly equipped, the A8 was one of the quickest large luxury sedans of its day, though the V8 was deficient in off-the-line torque. It was a comfortable car but not a particularly entertaining one due to overly soft suspension tuning. Audi also offered a less expensive front-wheel-drive model from 1997-'99. This rare A8 had a small 3.7-liter V8 and a modest 8.3-second 0-60 time.

Audi A8 Cars for Sale

2018 Audi A8 L 4.0T Sport quattro
NEW 2018 Audi A8 L 4.0T Sport quattro
Special Offer See special offer Rockville Audi(19mi)(9)
Dealer Notes

Check out this 2018! It delivers style and power in a single package! Turbocharger technology provides forced air induction, enhancing performance while preserving fuel economy. Audi prioritized comfort and style by including: heated and ventilated seats - both front and rear, power front and rear moon roofs, and power seats. Under the hood you'll find an 8 cylinder engine with more than 400 horsepower, and load leveling rear suspension maintains a comfortable ride. Well tuned suspension and stability control deliver a spirited, yet composed, ride and drive Our sales reps are extremely helpful knowledgeable. We'd be happy to answer any questions that you may have. Come on in and take a test drive!

2017 Audi A8 L 4.0T Sport quattro
NEW 2017 Audi A8 L 4.0T Sport quattro
Special Offer See special offer Audi Frederick(26mi)(5)
Dealer Notes

2017 Audi A8 L 4.0T Sport 29/18 Highway/City MPG

2017 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
NEW 2017 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
Special Offer See special offer Audi Silver Spring(29mi)(12)
Dealer Notes

Black Optic Exterior Package, Black Optic Package, Driver Assistance Package (Audi Active Lane Assist, Audi Adaptive Cruise Control w/Stop & Go, and High-Beam Assistant), Executive Package (4-Spoke Multifunction Heated Steering Wheel, Audi Head-Up Display, Audi Side Assist w/Pre Sense Rear, Front Seat Ventilation with Massage, Panoramic Sunroof, Rear Heated Seats, Rear Seat Pass-Through, and Topview Camera System (Front, Rear & Side Views)), Black Leather, 14 Speakers, 18-Way Power Heated Front Seats w/Memory, 4-Wheel Disc Brakes, ABS brakes, Adaptive suspension, Air Conditioning, AM/FM radio: SiriusXM, Assam Gray Vavona Wood Upper Inlays, Audi Guard All-Weather Floor Mats, Audi Guard Cargo Mat, Auto tilt-away steering wheel, Auto-dimming door mirrors, Auto-dimming Rear-View mirror, Auto-leveling suspension, Automatic temperature control, Black Cloth Headliner, Bose Surround Sound System w/AudioPilot, Brake assist, Bumpers: body-color, CD player, Compass, Delay-off headlights, Door auto-latch, Driver door bin, Driver vanity mirror, Dual front impact airbags, Dual front side impact airbags, DVD-Audio, Electronic Stability Control, Exterior Parking Camera Rear, Four wheel independent suspension, Front anti-roll bar, Front Bucket Seats, Front dual zone A/C, Front fog lights, Front reading lights, Garage door transmitter: HomeLink, Genuine wood console insert, Head restraints memory, Headlight cleaning, Heated door mirrors, Heated front seats, HVAC memory, Illuminated entry, Knee airbag, Leather Shift Knob, Leather steering wheel, Low tire pressure warning, Memory seat, MP3 decoder, Navigation System, Occupant sensing airbag, Outside temperature display, Overhead airbag, Overhead console, Panic alarm, Passenger door bin, Passenger vanity mirror, Power adjustable front head restraints, Power door mirrors, Power driver seat, Power moonroof, Power passenger seat, Power steering, Power windows, Radio data system, Radio: Audi MMI Navigation Plus System, Rain sensing wipers, Rear air conditioning, Rear anti-roll bar, Rear dual zone A/C, Rear fog lights, Rear reading lights, Rear seat center armrest, Rear side impact airbag, Rear Window Blind, Rear window defroster, Remote keyless entry, Seatbelt memory, Security system, Speed control, Speed-Sensitive Wipers, Steering wheel memory, Steering wheel mounted audio controls, Sun blinds, Tachometer, Telescoping steering wheel, Tilt steering wheel, Traction control, Trip computer, Turn signal indicator mirrors, Valetta Leather Seat Upholstery, Variably intermittent wipers, and Wheels: 9 x 19 15-Spoke-Design Alloy. *Your additional costs are sales tax, tag and title fees for the state in which the vehicle will be registered, any dealer-installed options (if applicable) and a $299 dealer processing fee. Pricing and incentives may vary if vehicle is leased. Prices are subject to change, and prior sales are excluded from these offers. While every reasonable effort is made to ensure the accuracy of this information, we are not responsible for any errors or omissions contained on these pages. Please verify any information in question with the dealer.

2017 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
NEW 2017 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
Special Offer See special offer Audi Owings Mills(47mi)(2)
Dealer Notes

Heated Leather Seats, Sunroof, NAV, Satellite Radio, iPod/MP3 Input, Bluetooth, Premium Sound System, DRIVER ASSISTANCE PACKAGE, EXECUTIVE PACKAGE CREDIT, EXECUTIVE PACKAGE, BLACK OPTIC PACKAGE, Supercharged, Rear Air. CLICK ME! OPTION PACKAGES: EXECUTIVE PACKAGE 4-Spoke Multifunction Heated Steering Wheel, shift paddles, Audi Head-Up Display, Wheels: 9 x 20 10-Spoke-Star Design, 22-Way Power Heated Front Comfort Sport Seats, heated rear seats, Front Seat Ventilation w/Massage, Panoramic Sunroof, tilt and independent power sunshade, Rear Heated Seats, Topview Camera System (Front, Rear & Side Views), Audi Side Assist w/Pre Sense Rear Operates at speeds above 19 mph, visual warnings located in exterior mirror housings, radar technology located behind rear bumper (not visible), and can be turned off, Rear Seat Pass-Through, Tires: 265/40R20 104H XL AS, DRIVER ASSISTANCE PACKAGE Audi Adaptive Cruise Control w/Stop & Go, 20-95 mph operation w/coast, 4 distance settings, stop and go functionality WHY BUY FROM US: Prices include freight, and are plus state tax, title, tags, $299 dealer processing (not required by law), & dealer installed options, if any. AUDI Owings Mills Advantage Price includes Loyalty or Acquisition incentive. Not all clients will qualify, to verify that or any information Please contact Client Advisor for details or to schedule an appointment. We make every effort to confirm the accuracy of the information posted on our website, however some is supplied by third party vendors. We are not responsible for any typographical errors or omissions. Lease offers require 1st month, acquisition fee and down payment, if any on delivery. Manufacturer pictures may not represent actual car. Horsepower calculations based on trim engine configuration. Fuel economy calculations based on original manufacturer data for trim engine configuration. Please confirm the accuracy of the included equipment by calling us prior to purchase.

2017 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
NEW 2017 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
Special Offer See special offer Audi Hunt Valley(54mi)(11)
Dealer Notes


2018 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
NEW 2018 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro
 Request price quote West Broad Audi(97mi)(0)
Dealer Notes

Monsoon Gray Metallic 2018 Audi A8 L 3.0T quattro quattro 8-Speed Automatic with Tiptronic 3.0L V6 Turbocharged DOHC 24V ULEV II 333hp Brown Leather. 29/19 Highway/City MPG