Always expected in line with Audi’s roadmap that will take us to the end of the decade, the R8 successor will be an EV. Here is what we know about it so far.
Audi’s legendary R8 is set to undergo a radical transformation as it prepares to embrace an all-electric future. The news of an electric R8 successor is still in its early stages but some details have emerged regarding what it will entail. Oliver Hoffman, Audi AG Board of Management, and Technical Development division leader told Autocar in an interview that Volkswagen Group’s upcoming Scalable Systems Platform can be adapted and reconfigured for “iconic cars – sports cars and so on.”
The move to electrify the R8 successor is in line with Audi’s broader strategy of transitioning to electric mobility. The automaker plans on producing its last new ICE-powered model by 2025 with everything thereafter being an EV. The Audi head honcho has stated that work on the electrified supercar has already begun and based on typical timelines it would be realistic to expect a production version to hit the market before the close of the decade. That being said, precise specifications remain a closely guarded secret but the automaker plans on making the R8 successor a worthy holder of its moniker.
One of the key highlights mentioned in the reports is that the electric R8 is likely to benefit from the knowledge and expertise gained from Audi’s participation in motorsport, particularly Formula E. This racing experience is expected to influence various aspects of the vehicle, including its electric powertrain, battery technology, and aerodynamics.
As a note, this isn’t the first time the moniker has adopted an electrified powertrain – in 2015 Audi introduced the all-electric R8 e-tron which wore the same body cladding as its ICE-powered alternatives. With a starting price of €1 million and available only in Europe, the model was discontinued after less than 100 units.
At the time, potential buyers had the opportunity to purchase the V8 or sonorous V10 for a fraction of the price so the sales failure of the R8 e-tron can be accredited to its competiion. In the next several years, with improving prices of electrified vehicles and their scalability, new car buyers won’t have the choice to stick with the fossil-fuel-burning alternative. Audi’s R8 successor will need to pick up where the current generation model ends. The question that begs to be asked: will enthusiasts buy into them?