What is it?
Another new ultimate Audi R8 super sports car: the V10-plus coupé. Strictly speaking, this car slots in between the 518bhp regular V10 and the 552bhp V10 GT coupé – although with the latter’s limited production run now finished, this effectively becomes the flagship R8.
Its 542bhp bears favourable comparison with most of the likes of the Porsche 911 Turbo S, Bentley Continental GT and Aston DB9, all close rivals on price. However, the R8’s spaceframe construction and mid-engined layout remain even more distinguishing selling points for it.
Audi has enhanced the standard V10’s specification by providing standard carbon-ceramic brakes, revised front-suspension geometry, uprated springs and firmer passive dampers as standard for the ‘plus’ version. The ceramic brake discs save 4kg in unsprung mass per corner, all on their own.
Various carbonfibre-reinforced plastic parts have substituted heavier ones all over the car, and lightweight bucket seats fitted, to bring the kerbweight of a manual ‘plus’ coupé in at just 1570kg – only 10kg heavier than an equivalent V8.