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Audi R8 Spyder 5.2 FSI quattro a Lambo brother in the test?

Rossen Gargolov
Audi R8 Spyder 5.2 FSI quattro in the test
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B Audi leaves the test candidate Audi R8 Spyder the bomb burst with the launch of the new car model. Because sometimes it makes sense to start with the more moderately motorized model variants, sometimes preference is given to the powerful top-of-the-range engines. The former is mostly the case with bread-and-butter cars built in large numbers, while the latter is more the case with cars that are bound to be fascinating.

With the R8 Spyder, Audi lets go of the top model with V10 engine

Ergo, unlike the Audi R8 Coupé before, Audi is now also unfaithful to the motto 'the best for last' and in the case of the R8 Spyder it is better to let go of the top model: For the time being, the roadster with its massive, wide rear and voluminous nostrils in the front is only available with the more powerful of the two engines offered in the coupé, the 5.2-liter V10 .

The ergonomics of the Audi R8 Spyder are flawless

The ten-cylinder in the Audi R8 Spyder supplies the four driven wheels with 525 hp and 530 Newton meters of maximum torque. In the test car, which costs 190,080 euros in full regalia, a manual six-speed gearbox with an open shift gate is responsible for transmitting the bearish forces. If you love self-determined manual work and the automated transmission called R tronic, which is subject to a surcharge, is already too expensive, you will love the perfectly functioning manual gearshift unit. Unlike in the past with Ferrari and Co., the speed steps slide extremely smoothly through the H-backdrop, which is framed by brushed aluminum. Annoying metallic clicking is not an issue. It would hardly have fit into the noble, sporty cockpit of the R8 Spyder.

That Audi is right to pay for entry into the 4.43 long and 1.90 meter wide soft top convertible with at least 156,400 euros becomes clear from the first contact with the two-seater. The multifunction steering wheel: flattened at the bottom as is usual with the Audi sports models and covered with comparatively rough, but very grippy suede. The seat shells: perfectly contoured above and below, provided with four-point belts useful for sports, comfortably tightly padded and covered with fine smooth leather. The instrument unit: informative and clear. The Multi-Media-Infotainment (MMI): Provides all the functions that Spyder pilots can use when cruising comfortably with or without a roofcould wish. The ergonomics: as always with the brand with the four rings, flawless. The right arm can rest casually on the center armrest, which has a removable ashtray and a bottle holder that is too low, and the aluminum gear knob is always within easy reach. The adjustment range of the ergonomically shaped valance is generously dimensioned, the operation largely self-explanatory. Only finding and activating the favorite CD inserted in the drive behind the hinged central display required several attempts, because the MMI does not have an operating button separate from the CD. Music lovers only get to their destination via the 'Source' submenu.

Oh yes - and you might have wished for a few more storage options. But whoever complains about such minor injustices, complains at a high level. This also applies to the subjectively not really fast acting electrohydraulic convertible top mechanism. A minimum of patience is required here, but it is also rewarded with a very elegant spectacle: The way in which the trunk lid made of carbon fiber composite material with the distinctive, silver slits folds in and out is definitely worth seeing because it is extremely delicate.

The body design of the R8 Spyder deserves undivided praise

Nice gimmick on the side: The heated glass pane, which is separately integrated in the bulkhead, can be extended or retracted at the push of a button, both with the roof open and closed . This provides either a small extra helping of fresh air or a little less hair-ruffling when enjoying topless food. If you want to take care of your hairstyle, which is not overly stressed when the windows are raised, you can also install the mobile wind deflector, which is supplied free of charge, with minimal effort. Either way, the open-top drive is strongly advised whenever the opportunity arises. Because as flawlessly as the perfectly fitting soft cap is presented when closed (even beyond 200 km /h you can listen to the audio system or the passenger without hesitation), the ten-cylinder sound that reaches the driver's ear without a roof is just as beguiling . Due to the special firing order of the 5.2-liter gasoline direct injection engine (here you get to the presentation of the Audi R8 GT) and the sports exhaust system fitted with two oval tailpipes integrated into the rear apron, the voice color of the open Audi athlete is Let the hairs on the neck stand at attention - without ever pushing yourself into the foreground free of charge. So sound design at it's best.

On the subject of design: the body design of the Audi R8 Spyder deserves unreserved praise. A little less understatement than, for example, the Turbo-Power-based competitor from Porsche and a little more restraint than the aggressively wedge-shaped corporate brother LamborghiniGallardo LP 560-4 Spyder should secure a loyal fan base for the open-hearted all-wheel drive of Bavarian descent.

The Audi R8 Spyder was exactly eight tenths of a second slower than the Coupé

This is even more true than that Plus in variability due to the roof that can be lowered at the push of a button and the associated additional weight of around 90 kilograms, the R8 Spyder does not have a lasting impact on the sporty spirit. At 1.12.7 minutes, the Pirelli P Zero-tyred roadster is exactly eight tenths of a second slower on the small circuit in Hockenheim than the coupé. A value that can be neglected because it is at best objectively effective. The exemplary stiff Spyder is not less fun when it comes to chasing the times. It is just as agile and safe around the corner as its closed brother. And acoustically, the unbridled willingness to perform of the bearishly gassing 525-PS mid-engine penetrates the pilot's ear even more emphatically - which subjectively makes up for the objective deficit. The carbon-fiber-ceramic brake system installed on the test car, which is subject to a surcharge, has the relatively weighty R8 offshoot, which weighs 1,758 kilograms, perfectly under control, just like in the standard brake test.

With 11.1 m /s² after the tenth stop maneuver from the speed of the country road, it grabs a bit more snappy than the gray cast iron system on board of the test coupé (here you get to the super test of the Audi R8 5.2 FSI Coupé) . On the other hand, in the case of the high-tech brake, ceramic disciples have to live with a response behavior that takes a bit of getting used to at low speeds. Anyone who rolls along in city traffic and pats frankly and freely on the middle pedal in front of the traffic light line may look like a novice driver when viewed from the outside. Sensible dosage looks different. As soon as things move quickly according to the species or the hopefully adaptive driver's brain has internalized the unusual responsiveness, nothing stands in the way of professional cooperation.

The most visually aggressive and dynamic open-air athlete comes from Italy.

The Lamborghini Gallardo LP 560-4 Spyder is unbeatable both on the racetrack and in the brake test. The Lambo owes its lead over its sister company, which is powered by the same ten-cylinder naturally aspirated engine, to its lower weight, the higher output of the 5.2-liter direct injection engine and the sports tires fitted to the test car. The financial outlay for purchase and maintenance is higher. The also all-wheel drive Porsche 911 Turbo Cabriolet is cheaper, visually more discreet and more sprinting - including two emergency seats in the rear.


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