2008 Audi R8: Push to Upshift? Are You Nuts.
July 21, 2008
It has taken me a while, but I've found a flaw in our long-term 2008 Audi R8.
When the car is equipped with the R-tronic transmission, as ours is, you push the shifter to upshift and pull it back to downshift. That's backassward. When you're upshifting, you're accelerating, so you should pull the lever. And when your downshifting, you're decelerating, so you should push the lever. That's how it's been in race cars for years.
Oddly, only Mazda and BMW get this right, even in their SUVs. The shifters in both our long term BMW X5 and Mazda CX-9 are as they should be, while the shifters in all our other cars, including the Cadillac CTS, Pontiac G8 GT and Hyundai Veracruz are backassward.
I know, I know, use the Audi's paddle shifters and the problem is solved, but I'm old school and still like to reach down and feel the action of the R8's aluminum shifter.
And another thing, the gear readout on the Audi's dash is way too low and too small. When you're flogging this car in manual mode, the gear readout should get larger for quicker reference.
Scott Oldham, Inside Line Editor in Chief @ 15,455 miles