eaThis is the Audi R8 V10 GT RWD, and it’s more momentous than it may appear. This is not just a powered-up, slightly lighter special edition R8. This is Audi’s final V10 supercar.
The company has confirmed that the successor to the R8 will take the form of a battery-powered e-tron spaceship next time around, so this is Audi’s last chance to have some fun with that glorious naturally aspirated 5.2-liter howler.
Nerds will remember the last R8 bowed out with an R8 GT edition. It had a wing, some aero flicks on the front bumper, ceramic brakes, and a little bit more power than an ordinary R8 V10. Audi only made 333 of them, to keep it exclusive. Seen one recently? Exactly.
Clearly, that recipe worked a treat, because the new R8 GT is... not radically different. Only 333 will be built (of which 15 are UK-bound) and there’s a numbered center console inside to prove it.
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Bucket seats, a carbon-fiber anti-roll bar, and new forged wheels add up to a 20kg weight saving—not a lot, but hey, BMW thinks a 1,625kg coupe is a ‘CSL,’ so a 1,570kg rear-wheel drive R8 sounds promising to us.
Power’s up to 611hp, with 565Nm of torque. Being rear-wheel-drive, it’s not lightning fast off the line—0-100kph takes 3.4sec, which is barely supercar territory these days. Thanks to swifter gearbox shifts, 0-200kph in 10.1sec is healthy, even if the 320kph top speed seems a missed opportunity. Surely the final petrol R8 should be able to do two hundred?
As you can see, the GT wears a swan-neck rear wing and front flicks, but Audi doesn’t make any downforce claims, oddly. What it does talk about at great length is the drift mode, called ‘Torque Rear.’ Which seems like stating the obvious really, given the R8 GT didn’t send any drive to the front wheels. Ever.
Anyway, Audi has coded in seven levels of rear-axle slippage, selected via a dial on the steering wheel. This might be the final loud R8 ever, but it should also be the R8 with the biggest, brashest sense of humor. We shall see.
Prices remain a mystery, but you’re unlikely to be getting much change from £200,000 (P13.32 million) when the first examples arrive in the UK next year.
Missed out on the brilliant Lamborghini Huracan STO? This might well be the next best thing—and an angry little piece of Audi history.
NOTE: This article first appeared on TopGear.com. Minor edits have been made.