How do you set yourself apart from the crowd?
Is it with a loud pair of shoes, a hat at a jaunty angle?
Perhaps with a purple suit?
Well, those will likely get you noticed, but not as much as, say a V10 supercar without a roof.
This is the Audi R8 Spider, and it's not one for shrinking violets.
The R8 has lost its lid, and you know what?
I think it looks pretty good.
Some convertibles that have been decoupaged can look a bit daft, both hood-up and down.
But, the R8 and it's stable mate the Lamborghini Hurricane.
Well, they both look pretty ace.
They suit it very nicely.
Now, let's take a look at what's different from the hard-top.
Well I spent plenty of time in the V10 plus but this one gets the regular V10's engine, that means a 5.2 liter motor with 532 break horsepower and 383 pound foot.
That'll shoot this thing from 0 to 62 in 3.6 seconds just 0.1 second slower.
Than the hardtop V10.
Its top speed 197 miles an hour.
[SOUND] So the mid engine V 10 super car is fast, fast is good, I like fast and because I've lost the roof of course it means I can enjoy that V 10 even more but when I have the roof up, the rear window.
Which is also a wind deflector when the room is down.
Well that can retract into the body, which means I can listen to the V10 howling even when it's raining.
Isn't modern technology great?
Because this is a noisy car with no roof and a rather distinctive look compared to everything else on the road.
Well, your gonna have a few people staring at you.
It's hard not to?
[UNKNOWN] convertible is all about style.
If you're gonna buy one of these you need to be 100% prepared to have a lot of people's attention directed right at you.
Now, personally I'm a Coupe guy but that's just personal preference.
But with all these things, this convertible it's all about the package of driver and car.
Basically if you're gonna buy one of these you have to.
Has to be ready for people to say, ooh how could they?
Yeah you can put the roof up.
Something you can do at up to 31 miles an hour and it takes just 20 seconds to do.
But if you're going to spend all your time with the soft top in view, Why bother buying the convertible?
The Spyder is a little bit, quite a bit heavier then the [UNKNOWN] but Audi says it's 50% stiffer then the old R8 Spyder and that as well hardly a floppy car.
If anything, this base V V10 until the inevitable V10+ comes out.
It's pretty hard core, it's pretty focused then the old R8, a bit harder.
Despite its extra hardness the new Spider is a whole ten percent better then the old car.
That means it will manage 24.1 mpg if you don't like the should of a wailing V10.
And if you don't then Well you're not really in the right place, are you?
So that's the preamble over with.
What's it like to drive.
It's a very changeable car.
I drove up here on the motorway and had everything in comfort mode.
The roof up, my music playing and it was just delightful.
It was like a normal car.
That was a little bit more bumpy than you'd expect, but other than that it was quiet and actually quite relaxing, but it's until you press this little flag button here, that puts it into, well, performance mode.
Now, this is performance drive, which means I've got Restricted stability, and I can only manually shift.
So, yeah, she gets proper angry.
And, it's fantastic fun.
You feel the car a lot more.
It moves around a little bit.
And, under braking, it gets quite squirrely.
The brakes are proper carbon jobs, which means it stops really quickly.
Those are optional, though.
It comes Even is standard.
The overwhelming impression you get from this thing, though, is just how fast it is.
With this V10, you can get up to some serious speed, seriously quickly.
And you know what?
It feels remarkably composed at, how do we say, motorway speeds.
Its just how it forces you forward, it's just nonstop.
Way of [UNKNOWN] and the speedo in front of you.
Just the number keep piling up and up and up and up.
And the rev counters just flies around flies around.
And in performance mode means you get a little green bit at the end that turns into yellow and then red when you simply must Change of a gear, it's urgence is excitable.
It wants to go really quick and with all that speed, you get the noise, that beautiful beat and howls.
It's not been solid by a turbo, it's not been fiddled wind.
It's just us 5.2 liters, 10 cylinders, 540 metric horsepower.
It'd just happiness.
Sounds like a song.
And just how much grip it's got.
Of course it is truly quattro'd up which means you can go around a bend at silly, silly, silly speeds, with very little movement in the car.
When you're properly hammering it, you do feel it move around a little bit.
For the [UNKNOWN] rate of the car, it's throttly sorted out.
There's no manual option in the new RA.
You can't have one because probably, no one would buy them.
But the good thing is, the seven speed dual clutch, is so good.
When you've got everything set to You pull the pedal and it does jerk you forward it's a proper angry feeling but you kinda get that little bit of engagement with it.
Set it to a more serene mode you can pull the paddle and it will do it smoothly gently but it's still seamless, it's so impressive.
But I do like that feeling when you're properly on it, pull the paddle up again bang, up again bang, the whole car just lunges it forward a little bit and it's been quite smart with the economy side of things cuz yeah it's got a big 5.2 liter V10 but it's got cylinder shut off so when you're on the motor way it shuts off half of your cylinders which means I covered about.
100 miles on one single glob of fuel.
In any other supercar, that would have been two or three.
But in this, it was remarkably efficient.
My range went down from 300, 65 miles to 350, which is bizarre.
I mean, of course, now I've been hammering around here.
I've used quite a lot of fuel, and my range is about 150.
But that's because it was born for places like here, the beautiful scenery.
It corners the car about, so you can hear the noise bouncing around.
You can see all the car working with you.
You can just bloody enjoy it.
You get to hear things in this, you get to hear a lot more than you do on the [INAUDIBLE].
And if anything, you get to feel a little more.
It looks good, it sound good and by heck does go good Good.
Okay so it's not a car without flaws.
For example this grey interior reminds me of a dodgy leather jacket from the 80s.
And even though this thing is quite huge there's not that much space inside.
But this is a super car remember and they do come with a few compromises.
So you can go very quickly and make lots of people very jealous.
Now Audi being Audi, they say that a lot of heritage with R8 Spider and you can kind of see where they come in from this end they had a long and a lustrous career.
At the LeMans 24 and in the WEC in general.
And the first car they campaigned with was called R8.
And guess what?
It was an open top and it had it's engine in the middle.
So technically this is an LeMans Car.
Technically, as I said earlier convertibles are all about style and so is the R8 Spyder.
The hardcore will go for something with a roof, those who want to be seen will go for one without.
However, there's not only looks here, but substance as well.
The R8 and its Italian sibling the Lamborghini Hurricane are some of the last naturally aspirated super card you can get.
Will they be the last of the breed?
Well who knows, but.
So now, the Audi R8 Spider as an experience, it certainly up there.
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