2017 Audi S8 Review
Pros & Cons
- Standard turbocharged V8 delivers incredibly quick acceleration
- All-wheel drive assures solid all-weather capability
- Clean design and high-quality materials throughout the cabin
- Drives and handles like a much smaller sedan
- Offered in only one very aggressive trim
- Less rear legroom than in its German competitors
- Not as much trunk space as you might expect for a car of its size
Which S8 does Edmunds recommend?
Edmunds' Expert Review
A luxury sedan that will outrun a Corvette? Yes, it exists and it's called the 2017 Audi S8. It also has a plush cabin, a quiet ride and enough room for full adults to ride in complete comfort. It's an impressive feat that few manufacturers can pull off.
The S8, available only in its more sporty Plus model form for 2017, comes powered by a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 tuned to produce 605 horsepower and 517 pound-feet of torque (a short burst of 36 extra lb-ft kicks in if you floor it). This passes through an eight-speed automatic transmission, which sends power to all four wheels through Audi's Quattro all-wheel-drive system.
The S8's most notable trait is no doubt its engine, but other things elevate this car above common luxury standards. An adjustable suspension with air springs and adaptive dampers, special sport steering calibration and a torque-vectoring rear differential allow the S8 to carve impossibly tight lines through twisty roads. Yet when you desire comfort, the S8 can soften system response for a highly civilized experience. A dichotomy of vehicle qualities pulled together with elegantly muscular design.
2017 Audi S8 models
The 2017 Audi S8 is a high-performance full-size luxury sedan that's only offered in the more powerful, sporty and very well-equipped Plus trim. Under the hood sits a powerful turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 (605 horsepower, 517 pound-feet) that connects to a shiftable eight-speed automatic transmission and an advanced all-wheel-drive system. However, unlike the Audi A8 sedan, the S8 is not offered in a long-wheelbase variant.
Standard features on the S8 Plus include 21-inch alloy wheels with high-performance tires, a sport-tuned adaptive air suspension, Audi Drive Select (selectable drive modes that alter steering assist, suspension, throttle and transmission calibrations), comprehensive LED exterior lighting (headlights, foglights, taillights and turn signals), automatic high-beam control, a surround-view parking camera system with front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, a collision mitigation system, a sunroof, auto-dimming and power-folding mirrors, a power trunklid, soft-close power doors, a trunk-mounted lip spoiler, and automatic headlights and windshield wipers.
Inside the S8 features keyless ignition and entry, diamond-stitched leather upholstery, four-zone automatic climate control, 22-way power-adjustable multicontour front seats (with massage, heating and ventilation functions), a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a faux suede headliner, and power rear side and rear window sunshades. The infotainment system, including navigation, is still one of the easiest to systems to use. An 8-inch central screen is controlled by an intuitive dial and a host of menu shortcut buttons, but it also features voice recognition and handwriting-recognition technology, helping to keep eyes on the road. A 7-inch driver information is located within the gauge cluster along with a head-up display that keeps all relevant information within the driver's line of sight. Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a 14-speaker, 630-watt Bose surround-sound audio with a CD/DVD player, satellite and HD radio, and an iPod interface are standard. Also included is Audi Connect with enhanced web-based navigation and mobile Wi-Fi capability.
If you're looking for more than what's mentioned above, the S8 Plus does have some available packages. The one we'd recommend most is the Driver Assistance package that comes with adaptive cruise control (with stop-and-go functionality), a more advanced collision mitigation system (Pre Sense Plus) and active lane keeping assist. The Dynamic package includes lightweight ceramic brake rotors, a carbon-fiber rear lip spoiler, a sport exhaust and a top-speed increase to 190 mph. The Cold Weather package adds a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats and a rear center seat pass-through for long items such as skis. The Full Leather package extends leather-wrapped surface coverage, while the Audi Design Selection packages include the Full Leather package and various trim accents such as wood and carbon fiber. And lastly the Black Optic package features gloss-black exterior accents and carbon side-view mirrors.
Some individual options include different wheel designs, a dual-screen rear-seat entertainment system, night-vision assist (with pedestrian and animal detection) and a 19-speaker, 1,400-watt Bang & Olufsen surround-sound audio system.
Features & Specs
Our experts like the S8 models:
- Active Lane Assist
- Detects lane markings and helps gently steer the vehicle back into the lane if you approach a line without the turn signal being activated.
- Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go
- Maintains a set interval from a lead vehicle in front and will bring the vehicle to a stop as traffic dictates.
- Side Assist (Blind-Spot Monitoring)
- Monitors approaching traffic behind the vehicle using radar and warns the driver as necessary before a lane change.