For many years, the internet has been making noise about a new Audi R8, and recent reports said that Audi will finally introduce an entry level R8 that will be equipped with a biturbo 2.9 liter V6 engine at the upcoming 2018 New York Auto Show. But apparently, all that was just a false alarm. In an interview between Road and Track and an Audi spokesperson, it was revealed that the R8 is not getting a V6 engine.
For quite some time now, the automaker did mention that the company is planning on installing a new V6 like that of the RS5 Coupe and RS4 Avant, in a cheaper R8 version, just below the V10 version. To further support that statement, there was a roadmap that was revealed around two years ago showing that the V6 powered R8 will be launched in 2018.
We do think that the automaker really planned on building one, but they had probably changed their mind and decided that they would instead keep the V10 model that produces 540 horsepower as the base version of the mid-engined supercar.
After launching the R8 RWS rear wheel drive, we have seen spy shots that show a refresh is being planned and it might come along with a more hardcore GT version. In October 2017, there was a prototype that was spotted and this model had huge oval exhaust tips similar to that of the GT Coupe and Spyder limited edition variants that belong to the original R8.
All these rumours about the V6 powered R8 began in February 2015, just a month before the second generation R8 made its debut. In an interview between Top Gear and Roland Schala, technical lead for the R8, he mentioned that the V6 is the perfect engine for a car like this, and that there is a lot of potential with that car.
A year later, it seemed like we would actually see a V6 powered R8. This is probably the reason why many of us are shocked that the automaker is completely rejecting the idea of the said car.
The current Audi R8 still has a couple of years left to live, but do not be to optimistic about this because it seems that there will be no third generation being considered at this time. Since Audi is currently focusing on SUVs like the RS Q5 and the RS Q8, at the same time, they have been working on performance EVs like the E-Tron GT, it seems like the R8 is far from the top of their priority list.
Speaking of priorities, Audi seems to have their hands full with the SUVs and all electric models. And as mentioned earlier, we can expect to see the E-Tron GT in 2020.