2018 Audi R8 – In Depth Review

After the successful debut last year, Audi has arrived with the all-new Audi R8 performance sport car for 2018. When we talk about the beauty of exotic cars, the 2018 Audi R8 is the first thing that comes to the mind. The R8 remains phenomenal and powerful production car built by Audi. The R8’s hot V-10 engine paired with a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission is capable enough to give you a thrilling experience. Just like the competitors like Nissan GT-R and Acura NSX, 2018 Audi R8 is a fun-to-drive sport car.

The R8 has gained a good reputation among prominent supercars in the U.S. The 2018 R8 is available in three trims, namely, the V10, V10 Plus, and a V10 Spyder Convertible.Talking about the new Audi R8 V10 Plus, which is claimed to be one of the powerful Audi’s ever built. Powering the V10 Plus is a naturally aspirated 610-hp 5.2-liter V10 with Audi’s all-wheel-drive Quattro drive.

This year, you’ll witness the 2018 Audi R8 with minor changes. The 2018 R8’s new Black Optic package offers 20-inch alloy wheels and dark interior. The car has received a beautifully finished cabin. Audi’s “Virtual Cockpit” replaces the conventional analog gauges and brings up a gorgeous screen in the front console.

What We Like:

  • High-revving V10 engine
  • Gorgeous Interior offering comfortable ride
  • Sporty exterior and styling
  • Dynamic power and handling
  • Fun to drive
  • Amazing virtual cockpit system

What We Don’t Like:

  • Narrow Shell seats
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Non-availability of Audi’s latest driver safety aids
  • Limited storage inside cabin
  • No manual transmission

What’s New with 2018 Audi R8

After being introduced as an all-new model last year, the 2018 Audi R8 gets minor updates for this year. The Black Optic Package accompanied by 20-inch 10-spoke wheels add glamour to the black trim of the model. However, you will find the following updates:

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto available as standard
  • V10 models equipped with laser headlights

2018 Audi R8 Trim Level and Features

The new R8 is available in two trims- V10 Quattro and V10 Plus, priced at $164,900 and $194,400 respectively. The base V10 model is featured with Audi magnetic ride and Audi Virtual Cockpit while the V10 Plus model is featured with Audi ceramic brakes, mirrors, spoiler, side blades, diffuser, fixed rear spoiler and Full LED headlamps.

Trims V10 Quattro V10 Plus Quattro
MSRP $164,900 $194,400
Features Audi magnetic ride

Audi virtual cockpit (12.3″ LCD fully digital instrument cluster)

MMI Navigation plus with voice control system

Audi ceramic brakes,

Carbon fiber engine, mirrors, spoiler, diffuser, sideblades and fixed rear spoiler

Full LED headlights with Audi laser high beam technology

 Power and Performance

The cost of the base model would seem to be quite reasonable as you may not get anything subpar below it. And when it comes to 2018 R8, the screaming V10 engine does its job with great responsiveness with the help of the 7-speed dual clutch transmission.

Audi R8 surprises you over every day driving all because of the flexible Drive Mode Select system. You can easily toggle between the Comfort and Auto modes to make the adaptive suspension do the rest work. Moreover, the performance mode turns off the traction control for the time being.

Engine and Transmission

The 2018 Audi R8 is available in two engine versions. The base R8 model gets a 5.2-liter V10 that propels 540 horsepower, while the R8 V10 Plus makes it to 610-horsepower. Both the engines are mated to a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission. The best part is that the paddle shifters are mounted on the steering wheel.

2018 Audi R8 V10 Engine
2018 Audi R8 V10 Engine

Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive is also standard across all trim level which is meant to enhance the gear shifting and make the drive more responsive. The R8 allows you to choose from multiple driving modes- Comfort, Auto, Dynamic, and individual. The R8 V10 Plus model gets a fifth mode named as Performance.

Models Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
MSRP $ 164,900 $109,990 $ 203,295 $156,940
Engine 5.2 L



3.8 L



5.2 L


3.8 L


Fuel type Gas Gas Gas Gas/Electric
Transmission Automatic Automatic Automatic Automatic
Power 540 hp @ 7800 rpm 565 hp @ 6800 rpm 580 hp @ 8000 rpm 573 hp @ 6500 rpm
Torque 398 ft-lbs. @ 6500 rpm 467 ft-lbs. @ 3300 rpm 397 ft-lbs. @ 6500 rpm 476 ft-lbs. @ 2000 rpm

“The Audi R8 V10 Plus delivers the performance expected of an exotic sports car. Acceleration is otherworldly, and handling is unflappable. What’s surprising, though, is how easy it is to explore its incredible capabilities and how pleasant it drives when you’re not dropping the hammer.” — Edmunds


The standard R8 coupe and Spyder models powered by a 5.32-liter V10 engine propel 540 hp. Only the R8 V10 Plus models offer 610 horsepower. The top speed of the coupe and the Spyder model is 199 mph while the V10 Plus model is capable of hitting 205 mph and sprints 0-60 mph in just 3.2 seconds. The 0-60 time for the base models is slower at 3.5 seconds.

Models Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
0-60 MPH 3.5 seconds 2.9 seconds 3.2 seconds 3.0 seconds
Quarter mile 10.6 seconds 11.0 seconds 11.0 seconds
Engine 5.2 L



3.8 L



5.2 L


3.8 L


Emission (CO2) 283


275 278 228


“The V-10’s torque is transmitted to all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. … It whips off gear changes at lightning speed, and it works beautifully with the V-10, including throttle blips on downshifts and not-s0-subtle backfires in the exhaust. Stick to Comfort mode, and the exhaust crackle disappears and the shifts become smoother.”– Car and Driver (2017)

Braking and Handling

The 2018 Audi R8 offers smooth handling. It comes with a magnetic suspension that keeps this exotic car stable in any road condition. The V10 Plus trims come with sport-tuned suspension. Just in case you find the models confusing, just be sure that all R8’s offer precise steering and agility. The sturdy brakes offer good stopping of 103 ft from 60-0 mph. The all-wheel-drive configuration has been offered as standard and it maintains the road grip intelligently.

Model Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
Brake pads-front(in) 14.4 in 15.4 in 14.4 in 14.5 in
Brake pads Rear(in) 14 in 15 in 14 in 14.2 in
Curb weight(lbs) 3737 3933 3399 3803
60-0 MPH (ft.) 103 95 104 103


“Even the brakes on the new R8 are remarkable, especially the carbon ceramics – standard on the V10 Plus, optional on the base car. They can be a bit grabby for around-town use, making smooth city stops a delicate affair. But when pushed, they deliver massive, phenomenal, easily modulated stopping power from 60 mph or 160 mph, the first time or the 50th.” — Automobile Magazine (2017)

“No matter the situation, you always have an accurate idea what it is about to do next. That’s thanks to a thorough chassis retuning, a redesigned all-wheel… — New York Daily News (2017


The current Fuel Economy estimates are not available for the 2018 Audi R8. But, the last year’s EPA reveals that the R8 delivers an EPA- 13 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. These figures are quite low for a sports car but this what you pay for the best sport car.

Model Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
Mpg city 13 16 14 21
Mpg highway 25 22 20 22
Mpg combine 17 18.7 16 21.4

2018 Audi R8 Exterior

The main integral part of Audi R8 are the full LED headlights and tail lamps. The front fascia looks super cool with the headlights and they are placed above the side air intakes and below the front fenders. The air inlets below the headlights are designed to draw air and keep the disc brakes cool.

In the rear, the air flows out through the vents that are located beneath the taillamps. This makes the car more aerodynamic, thus, helping in proper air circulation and cooling. The V10 plus gets options such as ceramic brakes, a sport exhaust, fixed spoiler and carbon-fiber rear diffuser.

Model Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
curb weight(lbs) 3737 3933 3399 3803
Lenght(in) 174.3 185.4 175.6 176
Width(in) 76.4 74.6 75.8 87.3
Height(in) 48.8 53.9 45.9 47.8
Ground clearance(in) 6.3 4.3 5.3 3.7
Wheel base(in) 104.4 109.4 103.2 103.5
Track width(in) F/R 64.5/63.0 62.6/63 65.7/63.8 65.2/63.7

Design and Styling

Audi has managed to give the 2018 R8 a sleek and exotic look. The car has a good appeal and turns out to be a head turner among the competitors. The profile is certainly distinctive and the passenger compartment has been kept more forward rather than making it a sloped-roof sports car. R8 appears wide as many of the design elements have been assembled outwards in order to give it a bolder outlook.

2018 Audi R8 Exterior
2018 Audi R8 Exterior Design

The R8 Spyders hold a long rear deck that gives the design eye-catching appeal. On the other hand, the R8 V10 Plus has fixed rear spoiler composed of carbon fiber, which is not scratch resistant. The rear looks more like Lamborghini than the Audi, all because of the sleek taillights.


The 2018 Audi R8 has got large alloy wheels which is good for a sports car. The competitors are also very close in this aspect. The R8 wheels are made up of aluminum while the Acura NSX and Nissan GTR get Forged Aluminum.

2018 Audi R8 Coupe Sport Edition Wheel
2018 Audi R8 Coupe Sport Edition Wheel
Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
Size F/R (in.) 19*8.5/19*11 20*9.5/20*10.5 19*8.5/19*11 19*8.5/20*11
Quality Aluminum Forged Aluminum Aluminum Forged Aluminum
Wheel type Alloy Alloy Alloy Alloy


2018 Audi R8 Interior

Audi is known for offering premium interior with ultimate color combination and upholstery. Audi R8 interior is top-notch with premium packing. The front console is very upmarket and classy. The seats are covered with Nappa leather, making it more comfortable.

2018 Audi R8 Interior
2018 Audi R8 Interior

Audi’s MMI navigation system is a quick way to stay connected and navigate your routes via google earth. The multi-function steering wheel that includes many street/track functions, makes many things easy for the driver. The R8 V10 Plus gets racing Shell seats.

Seating and Comfort

The seats are made up of premium material that’s why they are cozy and comfortable. Taking two passengers into consideration, there is enough space and headroom for the driver and the co-passenger. However, the equipment space is limited in comparison to competitors like Acura NCX and Lamborghini Huracan.

Model Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
Passenger capacity 2 4 2 2
Passenger Volume(ft cube) 50 79 44
Front (Head/Hip/Shoulder/Leg)



38.5/-/55.1/40.9 38.1/54.7/54.3/44.6 38.8/54.5/57.6/42.8
Second (Head/Hip/Shoulder/Leg)



—– 33.5/44.9,50,26.4 NA


“… the cabin of the new R8 is a leap forward. There is generous space for the driver and co-driver, with ample room behind the front seats to store bags. The dashboard is ultra-contemporary, with a reconfigurable TFT display in front of the driver, and angular, almost funky switchgear. The R8’s dash somewhat resembles the TT, but the styling language is more extreme and the materials are more upscale, and all befitting a $180K supercar.” – New York Daily News (2017)

Interior Features

Audi has offered a wide range of standard fitments with the new R8. The V10 plus models get an extra package that includes sport exhaust, drive select and premium leather upholstery. Audi’s virtual cockpit is standard on all models that makes it distinguished among the competitors.

2018 Audi R8 Virtual Cockpit
2018 Audi R8 Virtual Cockpit
Notable Features
Standard Fitment Optional Fitment
·         Audi’s Drive Select variable drive modes

·         Magnetic shocks

·         Audi’s Virtual Cockpit

·         Audi’s MMI infotainment interface

·         Audi Connect

·         Power-folding side mirrors

·         Auto-dimming

·         Spoiler

·         13-speaker Bang and Olufsen sound system

·         Racing-shell seats

·         Ceramic brakes

·         Sport exhaust

·         Diamond-stitched leather

·         Drive Select


“Audi interiors are always top-notch, and as the top-notch Audi, the R8 boasts a beautifully styled and intuitively laid-out cockpit.The multi-function steering wheel incorporates many of the street/track functions, and Audi’s excellent Virtual Cockpit replaces physical gauges with a high-res 12.3-inch display that shows information chosen by the driver.” — Kelley Blue Book


The front console comes featured with a 12.3-inch screen behind the steering wheel, along with the traditional gauge cluster. It reveals the driver information and acts as a sole infotainment panel. The infotainment comes integrated with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, voice control and handwriting recognition.

The responsive MMI system is offered with sharp graphics but the absence of a secondary display screen in the dashboard can be easily spotted.


The 2018 R8 offer decent cargo space than other competitors in the segment. But, unfortunately, the cargo hold is of no much use. There is only 8 cubic feet of total storage space, in-between front and rear seats. There is enough room to carry small luggage but don’t expect to fit over-sized luggage.

2018 Audi R8 Coupe V10 Quattro AWD Trunk
2018 Audi R8 Coupe V10 Quattro AWD Trunk
Model Audi R8 (coupe) Nissan GTR Lamborghini Huracan Acura NSX
Trunk Volume: ft³ 8 8.8 4.0 4.4

Safety and Reliability

The 2018 Audi R8 has not been tested by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Therefore, the rating is not available. However, the Audi R8 belongs to that generation of Audi that scores a predictable rating of three out of five from J.D. Power and Associates. This rating is general, which is meant for the majority of cars, while the sports cars can score better in overall rating tests.

Safety Features

The safety features on both R8 V10 Coupe and the V10 Plus are similar. The standard active safety features in the 2018 R8 include a rearview camera and front and rear parking sensors.  The available optional package available on the 2018 R8 V10 Plus includes Black optic package, Sport seat package with diamond stitching.

The optional package available for R8 V10 coupe includes Ceramic brake package, Black optic package, Carbon exterior/interior package and Diamond stitch leather package.

The notable safety features for 2018 R8 V10 and R8 V10 Plus are listed below:

Audi R8 V10 Coupe R8 V10 plus Coupe
Electronic Stability Control (ESC) Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
ABS And Driveline Traction Control ABS And Driveline Traction Control
Side Impact Beams Side Impact Beams
Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags
Front And Rear Parking Sensors Front And Rear Parking Sensors
Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags
SIDEGUARD Curtain 1st Row Airbags SIDEGUARD Curtain 1st Row Airbags
Airbag Occupancy Sensor Airbag Occupancy Sensor
Driver Knee Airbag Driver Knee Airbag
Back-Up Camera Back-Up Camera
Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning
Electromechanical parking brake Electromechanical parking brake

2018 Audi R8 Competition Check

Lamborghini Huracan

The 2018 Audi R8 may not look as exotic as the Lamborghini Huracan, but it is dynamic and fast in every aspect. Both the scars share same engine and chassis. They also weigh same, though Audi is heavier. The main difference lies with the powertrain, Audi has its own seven-speed S-Tronic gearbox and all-wheel Quattro drive.

If you are looking for a more stylish exotic car, then Audi R8 V10 Plus can be a cool pick.

Nissan GTR

The Nissan GTR consists more safety features than the Audi R8. Moreover, the GTR is more spacious than the R8. If you are looking for a performance car with an efficient engine, then Nissan GTR is a good pick.

Acura NSX

Acura NSX is a supercar and it is available in the hybrid version as well. It is powered by a twin-turbo V6 engine and three electric motors. It has also got faster acceleration, notably, it goes o-60 mph in just 3 seconds. The NSX’s seats are comfortable and the cabin provided a good amount of space.

2018 Audi R8 Final Verdict

“Picking up where the last R8 V10 Plus left off, the 2017 Audi R8 is better in every way imaginable: it’s more comfortable, it’s better looking, the cabin looks more like a supercar’s should, and it’s quicker, faster, and sharper to respond. As it should be. And that’s the ‘entry level’ R8. The new R8 V10 Plus is, well, all of that – plus.” — Automobile Magazine (2017)

The 2018 Audi R8 is a supercar that ranks top among the luxury sports cars. It is known for its breathtaking performance and handling. The engine and driving ability are simply mind-blowing. It is one of those supercars that one can drive regularly. It has got refined and upmarket interior with plenty of user-friendly technology.

The R8 and Huracan look quite similar and you won’t like to see them as rivals. The Lamborghini is angrier, harder and slightly faster but from the outsider’s perspective, Audi will do pretty much same stuff. The R8 is definitely the better sports car in this regard.


5 thoughts on “2018 Audi R8 – In Depth Review”

  1. Always excited to see this car on roads, Brilliantly explained and hold me throughout the article.
    Keep posting more about cars. Hope to see quality stuff in near future.

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