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The innovative R8 supercar from Audi is now available for the first time with full LED headlamps. In addition to the standard Audi-signature 24-LED running lamps it's always had, this extremely expensive option (£3,590 converts to $7,100 USD) adds LED high and low beam headlamps and LED turn signals to the front fascia of the mid-engine sports car.

The latest craze in automotive lighting, LED bulbs don't utilize a filament like halogen lamps or gas plasma like HID lamps. Instead, they create light from the movement of current across a semi-conductor chip. They are smaller, more vibration resistant, and much more efficient than traditional bulbs. According to Audi, the light from the LEDs has been designed to closely resemble daylight and provides a greater contrast to be easier on the human eye. LED illumination is also designed to last the lifetime of the vehicle. Audi is no stranger to LED lighting - it first introduced a strip-shaped fog lamp at the Detroit Auto Show back in 2003.


[Source: Audi]

Ingolstadt, 2008-05-30

First full-LED headlamp for the Audi R8

  • 54 high-performance LEDs provide all lighting functions
  • Color similar to daylight offers advantages at night
  • Innovative lighting technology as an option

Ingolstadt – Effective immediately, the range of equipment available for the Audi R8 sports car now also includes the first full-LED headlamp. In addition to the daytime running light which now features 24 LEDs per headlamp, light-emitting diodes are also used for the turn signals, the low-beam and the high-beam headlights. The €3,590 option rounds out the list of equipment available for the high-tech, mid-engine sports car.

The earlier launch of LED technology at the front of the car required a waiver by the European Union. The prominent advantages are lower energy consumption and a color that more closely resembles daylight, provides greater contrast and is easier on the human eye. LEDs are also non-wearing, require a lower voltage, are compact and offer greater design freedom.

The new full-LED headlamp represents the pinnacle of Audi's lighting strategy. The use of LEDs already enjoys a long tradition. This innovative technology has previously been used in production vehicles for tail light functions, brake lights and daytime running lights. Since early 2003, Audi has also used the semiconductor technology in a number of concept cars to implement some or all of the lighting functions at the front of the car.

The brand with the four rings first introduced a strip-shaped fog lamp at the Detroit Auto Show in 2003. That same year, the Audi Nuvolari quattro showing the first full-LED headlamp was a highlight of the Geneva Auto Show. And the Le Mans quattro – a legitimate predecessor to the Audi R8 – illuminated the Frankfurt night with LEDs on the eve of the 2003 Frankfurt Auto Show.

Additional concept cars and many refinements to the light source and headlamp geometry followed. This technological highlight is now available as an option for the Audi R8, where it joins other very well-known high-tech components such as the aluminum Audi Space Frame, ceramic brakes and the mid-mounted V8 engine with FSI technology.

AUDI AG sold a total of 964,151 cars in 2007 and thus achieved its twelfth consecutive record year. With revenue of €33,617 million and profit before tax of €2,915 million, the company attained its best figures ever. Audi produces vehicles in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm (Germany), Györ (Hungary), Changchun (China) and Brussels (Belgium). At the end of 2007, production of the Audi A6 started in Aurangabad, India. The company is active in more than 100 markets worldwide. AUDI AG's wholly owned subsidiaries include Lamborghini S.p.A. in Sant'Agata Bolognese, Italy, and quattro GmbH in Neckarsulm. Audi currently employs around 54,000 people worldwide, including 45,000 in Germany. The brand with the four rings invests more than € 2 billion each year in order to sustain the company's technological lead embodied in its "Vorsprung durch Technik" slogan. Audi plans to significantly increase the number of models in its portfolio by 2015, from the 26 currently on offer to 40.


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