Audi sharpens the appeal of its flagship S8

Audi launched an enhanced version of its flagship S8 in South Africa this week.

22 Audi S8a

Changes appear to be minor, but Audi has specified that the flagship must include most features, with little left on the option list.

What’s new?

From the outside, the new front-end immediately catches the eye with a more prominent grille with a different design motif than before. The headlight clusters are new with Digital Matrix LED lights that now have 1.3 million small mirrors optimising the light beam as well as new front air intakes on the lower sides.

At the back, the changes are even more subtle with new OLED lights and an enhanced diffuser surrounded by the two tail pipes on each side.

On the inside, Audi has reworked the seat stitching and interior finishes. Seats heat and cool and have a massage function. The infotainment and vehicle information systems have also been upgraded.

The big news is Audis new active suspension system. The system can control each wheel individually, improving ride quality, and it is tuned differently than the standard A8. On the S8, it delivers improved cornering prowess thanks to reduced body roll.

As for power, more than 80% of the engine’s 420 kW can be sent to the back wheels if needed.

Video cameras and sensors assist by evaluating the road surface ahead and adjusting the suspension accordingly.

To help with getting in and out of the car comfortably, the body raises and lowers itself by up to 50 mm.

Power is provided by Audi’s known biturbo V8 generating 420 kW and 800 Nm with a claimed acceleration figure of only 3.8 seconds to reach 100 km/h. The engine is connected to an eight-step tiptronic gearbox.

Local market introduction of the new S8 takes place today with prices starting at R2 759 000.

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