A Supercar Without The Bad Attitude 2012 Audi R8 GT - Click above for high-res image gallery Regardless of the frequency, our pulse still races every time we fire up a ten-cylinder engine. It's not just the unique sound or the warbled vibration that gets the blood flowing – it's the anticipation. Whether the badge says Gallardo, Viper or M5, a V10 under the hood promises intoxicating power and frenzied excitement. The new Audi R8 GT packs just such an engine – a 5.2-liter V10. Mid-mounted in an aluminum and magnesium monocoque chassis, the powerplant is rated at 560 horsepower. With all-wheel drive and a sequential gearbox, the coupe rockets to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds before hitting an aerodynamic wall just shy of 200 miles per hour. It is, notes Audi, the lightest, fastest and most powerful supercar in its lineup. Constructing the R8 GT was hardly a mild undertaking. Audi first put the R8 on a diet, shedding 180 pounds. They then turned their attention to the powerplant, where engineers were able to coax the 5.2-liter V10 into delivering another 35 hp. The suspension, brakes and underpinnings were upgraded, while the automatic gearbox and all-wheel-drive system received their own new set of commands. Lastly, unique cosmetic touches were applied that not only improved the R8's appearance, but boosted performance. As Audi has limited production of the R8 GT to just 333 copies worldwide (with only 90 examples falling into very lucky hands within the United States), we consider ourselves fortunate to be one of just a handful of journalists at Sonoma, California's Infineon Raceway to put the world's newest exotic through its paces on a race circuit. The R8 GT costs $87K more than an R8 4.2 and $39K than a standard R8 5.2. The Audi R8 road car, not to be confused with the automaker's winning R8 Le Mans Prototype racer, first arrived in the States for the 2008 model year. Sharing underpinnings with the Lamborghini Gallardo, the two-seat exotic debuted as the German automaker's flagship and most expensive offering. With Audi Space Frame (ASF) technology keeping weight relatively low and Quattro all-wheel drive for grip, performance was impressive even though it was a bit shy in the power department – standard fitment was a 4.2-liter V8 rated at 425 horsepower. Soon afterward, a more powerful 5.2-liter V10 arrived. It added a bit of weight, but the newfound performance bumped the R8 into supercar territory. The coupe's top came off in 2009, when the R8 Spyder variant debuted at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Last spring, as Audi's flagship sports car entered its fourth year, the German automaker announced a new R8 was under development. By "adding lightness," boosting power and thoroughly reworking the suspension and brakes, the company promised to inject new levels of performance into the R8 – a vehicle not scheduled for replacement until 2014. Officially introduced at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, the 2012 Audi R8 GT will land on U.S. soil with a …
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|MPG||12 City / 19 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd man w/OD|
|Power||525 @ 8000 rpm|
|Drivetrain||quattro all wheel|
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