Where to even begin with the Audi R8 V8. Let's start with the Ferrari 458 Italia, a car that doubles the base price of the Audi. It's much more fun to drive than it is to talk about; discussions among enthusiasts usually begin with someone saying, "It's amazing!" and end with everyone else agreeing. Opposite that is the vast, swirling nebula of cars that are often more fun to talk about than they are to drive. In between, there are very few cars that are as fun to discuss as they are to drive, and this Audi is one. It's a car that challenges our notions about its actual competitive set and, even better, its philosophical competitive set, its driving experience, its price, its future, its present viewed from the future, and its verifiable and/or potential pedigree. We recently attempted to sort out some of those notions during ten days in an R8 V8 driving from Munich to Le Mans. We arrived at quite a few answers, and although we walked away from it still confounded, there's no denying one thing: it is so, so good. Audi's R8 is an impressive and deeply alluring car, as opposed to beautiful. We took possession of a white R8 with black sideblades at the Munich airport, then headed straight to meet a local friend and to photograph it before introducing all that Ibis paint to German bugs at 180 miles per hour. Taking a long look at it while it sat posed in front of the Nymphenburgschloss and Antikensammlungen, your author thinks it's an impressive and deeply alluring car, as opposed to beautiful – not a Venus, rather one of the finer works of that ferocious hot smithy, Vulcan. With an overall aesthetic that, like its performance, is sublimely balanced. In fact, only one note strikes as odd, and only when you stop to notice it: there's ample front overhang. But its compact shape is all business, low and wide, nary a superfluous curve, and once you turn it on, its LED daytime running lamps transform that already fierce face into an ice-cold threat. If The Wolf ever saw fit to get rid of his Acura NSX, this would make an excellent replacement. And let us go on the record as saying it's criminal that Washington won't let us have the facelifted R8's sequential turn signals. If it weren't for the endless stares and your knuckles scraping the pavement when you adjust the seat, you could be excused for thinking you're in a slammed RS5. As we would discover over a few days tooling around Bavaria's heart while loading up on Würst, Radler and idyll, the R8 is the perfect urban pet. For a car that looks so low you could scrape your knee on the roof – it's two inches lower than a Porsche 911, the same height as an Aston Martin V8 Vantage – it's easy to get in and out of. The diktat of exterior purpose continues inside, with …
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|MPG||11 City / 20 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd man w/OD|
|Power||430 @ 7900 rpm|
|Drivetrain||quattro all wheel|
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