The new Audi A8 will become available to order in Germany from October 5, becoming the first model of the company to offer an electrified-only range of powertrains as well as the first Audi to adopt the new type designation.
Audi’s new flagship will be available with a choice of two powertrains at launch; a 3.0-liter TFSI petrol and a 3.0-liter TDI diesel engine.
The diesel unit produces 286hp and 442lb-ft (600Nm) of torque, enabling the A8 to perform a 0-62mph (100km/h) in 5.9 seconds while fuel economy is a combined 5.8 to 5.6lt/100km (40.6 to 42 mpg US).
On the other hand, the 3.0-liter V6 petrol engine makes 340hp and 368lb-ft (500Nm) of torque. 0-62mph comes in 5.6 seconds, with the long-wheelbase version needing an extra tenth at 5.7, with a combined fuel economy rated between 7.8 and 7.5lt/100km (30.2 to 31.4 mpg US).
Both engines make use of a belt alternator starter which sits at the heart of the model’s 48-volt electrical architecture. This makes all versions of the A8 mild-hybrids, as the technology enables coasting with the engine switched off and a smooth restart.
There’s also an extended start/stop function and a recuperation output of 16hp (12kW) from the energy recovered during braking. Audi claims that these measures help to bring down fuel consumption of the engine by as much as 0.7lt/100km in real driving conditions.
As for Audi’s new type designation, the A8 with the 3.0-liter TDI will be named A8 50 TDI Quattro, with the V6 petrol model called A8 55 TFSI Quattro. The reference value for the two-digit number combo is the power output of the model in kW: models with the “50” deliver between 210 and 230kW of power, while those with the “55” offer between 245 and 275kW. The new type designation will be eventually offered worldwide for the entire Audi range.
The new Audi A8 also offers more than 40 driver assistance systems, with the highlight being off course the AI traffic jam pilot; the system makes the new A8 fully autonomous at up to 60km/h (37mph) on highways and multi-lane motorways with a physical barrier between the two directions of traffic. Audi plans to gradually taking autonomous driving systems like the parking pilot, garage pilot and traffic jam pilot into production, depending on each country’s legal situation.
The new Audi A8 starts at 90,600 euros in Germany, with the long-wheelbase version asking for 94,100 euros.