‘OPEN WIDE & SAY R’
Added 9th September, 2019
By Jonathan Crouch
With the original R8, Audi set out to prove that it could build a junior supercar. With the MK2 ‘Type 4S’ model, it did. The aim here was twofold: to perfect the original package and then prove it capable of edging towards the more exclusive territory occupied by Lamborghini, McLaren and Ferrari. A step too far?
No. The four rings don’t give this car the rarefied appeal of a Huracan or a 488 GTB, but in most meaningful respects, this MK2 model can match them car-for-car. Unlike its Italian rivals, it feels bullet-proof. And unlike a Porsche 911 Turbo, it makes a six-figure statement. Audi has clearly benchmarked both approaches and here blended Latin exclusivity with Teutonic day-to-day usability, creating a finished product that’s difficult to beat if you want a car of this kind you could drive every day. But does this second generation R8 have quite the charm of the original? Maybe not, but then to some extent, that’s the price of progress - quite a hefty price in this case.
Ultimately though, we’ll take this R8 as it is, loving its looks, its classic configuration and its determination to stick with melodic normally aspirated power. It’s a very Audi supercar. And there’s nothing quite like it.