2011 Audi R8 Spyder at Frankfurt Motor Show

Audir8spyder

  • Competes with: Ferrari California and F430 Spider, Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder, Porsche 911 Cabriolet Carrera 4S
  • Looks like: A droptop R8 from the front and rear; a sweet convertible from the side
  • Drivetrain: 525-hp, V-10, six-speed manual or six-speed dual-clutch automated manual
  • Hits dealerships: Spring 2010…in Europe 

Lucky Frankfurt Motor Show attendees will be the first to see a convertible version of Audi's phenomenal R8, called the R8 Spyder. Foregoing the proliferating retractable hardtop, Audi has gone with a soft-top to keep weight in check and maximize cargo space (and really, when the engine's behind the seats, there's little choice). Due for production in the first quarter of 2010, the Spyder will come only with a 5.2-liter V-10 engine, which is a new option on the hardtop R8 for 2010.

Much of the added weight in convertible versions of coupes comes from structural reinforcements, but Audi claims the Spyder's aluminum space frame is only about 13 pounds heavier than the coupe's. The fully automatic top itself adds about 66 pounds, Audi says.

The Spyder lacks the coupe's characteristic side blades, however, the air intakes remain on the flanks behind the doors to cool the midmounted engine. Available photos only show the car with the top down, so we can't tell how it matches the coupe's silhouette. It definitely looks good, and it's unmistakably an R8 when viewed from the front and back.

The V-10 engine generates 525 horsepower at 8,000 rpm and 390 pounds-feet of torque at 6,500 rpm, which is a bit high in the rev range. The range itself is high with a redline of 8,700 rpm — impressive, as it is in the coupe's V-8.

Quattro all-wheel drive is standard, with a rear torque bias for a rear-wheel-drive feel. Transmission choices include a six-speed manual with the gate shifter we loved or an R tronic dual-clutch six-speed automated manual with Drive and Sport modes as well as manual stick or paddle shifting. Audi says the manual R8 Spyder hits 62 mph in 4.1 seconds and a top speed of 194.5 mph. Its combined city/highway gas mileage is estimated at 15.8 mpg. The automatic improves it to 16.9 mpg.

An electromagnetic adaptive suspension is standard, but a sport suspension option reverts to conventional sport-tuned shock absorbers. The brakes comprise eight-piston calipers in front and four-pistons in the rear.

Naturally, leather upholstery is standard, as are heated seats and a premium Bang & Olufsen stereo. Navigation and Audi's Multi-Media Interface controller are standard, but you'll pay extra for a backup camera. One nifty innovation: Optional microphones in the shoulder belts are close enough to the driver's and passenger's mouths for hands-free cellular communication with the top down.

Safety features include standard antilock brakes and combination thorax/head side-impact airbags. There's an electronic stability system with regular and Sport modes, plus full defeat.

Audi will only say that the Spyder will arrive here sometime after its European rollout and will be a 2011 model.

Comments 

Mike

Hmmmm, this looks deceptivley expensive. I hope I can afford one when it comes out, but i probably wouldn't be able to.

Oh, look, another super-expensive car covered by the media who gets to drive these cars for free. While I wouldn't turn down a free drive in one of these cars - heck, I didn't turn down a free drive in a Hyundai Genesis Coupe (nice, btw, thanks for asking) - at these price levels handling, fit and finish, reliability, fuel economy, number of cup holders, it's all superfluous. Writing about these things in relation to the car is patronizing to the reader. Ok, maybe not handling, but everything else doesn't really matter on these cars because the people who own them aren't going to drive them that much anyways. How about drive them and tell us how rich the leather is in comparison to a Honda Accord, or if driving one makes your male organ larger.

* http://www.cardealerhorrorstories.com *

Looks like a Audi A4 Crossed over with a fiat 500. We will just have to wait a see the final turn-out

This car Took Audi to the different segment of the Sport Look Cars. Like Ferrari & Lamborghini all other care of the security & luxury are most preferable to this car. also i like about this car as they try some diff. color for this car to make its brand image.

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