Over the last few months, the fourth-generation Audi A8 has been extensively teased online, but now Audi has officially unveiled the production version at Audi Summit in Barcelona. Sporting a fresh design and semi-autonomous technology, the new model will look to finally rival the benchmark Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7 Series in terms of sales.
The new A8 will be the first Audi to make use of the brand’s cutting-edge 10,1-inch LED touchscreen interface, which does away with the familiar MMI rotary controller. The most important inclusion on the new A8, however, is the new piloted driving system that manages the acceleration, braking and steering below 60 km/h. What’s interesting about this system, though, is that the driver will not be required to hold the steering wheel while this system is operational, like on its rivals.
As far as dynamics are concerned, all A8 models will be equipped with Quattro all-wheel drive, as well as all-wheel steering and “AI” active suspension which is able to lower and raise each wheel individually.
As far as power is concerned, at the entry level, the A8 and A8 L will boast the option of a 3,0 TDI or 3,0T FSI, which generate 210 kW and 250 kW respectively. For the V8 fans, there will also be a 4,0 TDI and 4,2T FSI, with 320 kW or 338 kW (they’ll be introduced later). The 6,0-litre W12 will follow soon after as a flagship model. Audi has not yet confirmed any S or RS versions.
In addition to this, there will also be an Audi A8 L e-tron Quattro featuring the 3,0T FSI alongside a lithium-ion battery-powered electric motor to produce total outputs of 330 kW and 700 N.m of torque.
The Audi A8 will arrive in SA in the second half of 2018. Local pricing is yet to be announced.