Audi R8 gets a facelift for 2013
R8 V10 Plus, new headlights, and new auto box
By Shahzad Sheikh
Believe it or not, the futuristic Audi R8 is now six years old, so it’s had a bit of refresh. There are styling tweaks for both the coupe and Spyder versions due on sale later this year, finally a new dual-clutch automatic transmission, and a new range-topping R8 Plus model.
The grilled has been reshaped, there’s a new bumper with three crossbars on the air inlets of all models now, and LED headlights are standard on all cars. Light-emitting diodes are placed above and below the strip-shaped daytime running lights. In the V10 the blades extend out farther and have special edging, and the vent louvers next to the rear window have an alumimium look (matt black on V8 and V10 plus models).
LEDs illuminate the engine compartment and there’s more LEDs at the rear too. The rear indicators now point in the direction of travel and there are tweaks to the badging.
The clunky automatic has always been something of an Achilles heel for me, but it’s finally been replaced with a dual-clutch transmission, the 7-speed S-Tronic, but Audi is still also thankfully offering the open-gated manual gearbox. The new auto does make the R8 a little quicker to 100kph (4.3 seconds for the V8 and just 3.6 seconds for the V10). But the regular engines are unchanged.
However, there is a new range-topping R8 Plus, visually identified by a lot of carbon fibre, blackened exhausts , lightweight bucket seats and it only comes as a coupe. It benefits from sportier suspension and a 543bhp version of the 5.2 V10, giving a 0-100kph time of 3.5 seconds.