One thing we dig about Audi is the mantle they've assumed as the pioneers in diesel power. Most specifically, making diesels that knock the socks off gasoline engines, and shattering conventional wisdom in the process. As if dominating endurance sports car racing wasn't enough, Audi announced they'd be competing with bio-diesel next year, as we reported earlier. Still not enough? Following the launch of the highly anticipated R8 supercar, Audi revealed they'd be shoehorning a diesel in there, too. Still not enough? The latest reports indicate that the diesel in question could very well be a V12, the same found in the Q7 sport-ute and the A8 luxury sedan. The six-liter unit pumps out that magic figure of 500 horsepower, and a stump-pullin', rip-roarin' 738 lb-ft of torque. Pending the arrival of the V10 derived from the R8's sister, the Lamborghini Gallardo, that would make the diesel the most powerful and quickest version of the R8 available, and a pioneer for diesel supercars.
It's far from confirmed that the V12 diesel will in the end be available in the R8. There are packaging issues to be dealt with, considering the V12 is significantly bigger than a V8 or V10 (no kidding), plus they'd have to fit the advanced filter system in there, too. But "senior board members" have revealed that Audi is hard at work on it, and if the hurdles can be jumped, we could see the R8 diesel on the road by 2009.
[Source: Motor Trend via German Car Blog]