You can get one for less than a new Accord or Camry.
What's your favorite movie car? There are plenty to choose from: the Mustang from Bullitt, Trans Am from Smokey and the Bandit, DeLorean from Back to the Future, and the Aston Martin DB5 from Goldfinger. But the Audi S8 is a sneakier choice. Though it isn't the most flashy car ever built, the S8 appeared in one of the most iconic and realistic car chase scenes in cinema history in the cult classic movie Ronin. And although it was technically an A8 W12, not an S8, Jason Statham rocked one in The Transporter.
To buy a brand-new 2021 Audi S8 today, you'll need to shell out $130,900. But if you are willing to opt for a used model, you can knock a whopping $100,000 off that price. For less than the price of a fully-loaded Accord or Camry, you can now own one of the coolest sedans in the world.
As we previously mentioned, the S8 (and A8) is cool enough to be featured as a Hollywood hero car for protagonists who want to fly under the radar. Sure, an Aston Martin or Ferrari might be more stylish, but what effective secret agent would ever try to draw so much attention? The S8 has enough power to rival sports cars in a straight line, but it still operates like a full-size flagship luxury sedan. If your goal is the gobble up highway miles in a hurry, there a few tools more suited for the job than an S8.
A new S8 costs well into six figures, but a used example from the outgoing D4 third-generation can now be bought for a fraction of that price. Used models from 2014 start below $30,000 with 80,000 to 100,000 miles and go upwards from there based on mileage and condition. Even newer, low-mileage examples from 2017-2018 top out around $80,000, making them a tremendous bargain compared to a brand-new one.
Powering the S8 is a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 producing 520 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque. Audi later released an S8 Plus variant in 2016, which upped the output to 605 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. With an eight-speed automatic transmission sending power to Quattro all-wheel-drive, the standard S8 takes just 4.2 seconds to hit 60 mph. The S8 Plus is even quicker, with 60 mph coming in just 3.8 seconds. In independent tests, both of these figures proved to be highly conservative estimates.
As the flagship sedan in Audi's lineup, the S8 features a top-quality interior. Nearly every touchable surface comes wrapped in leather, Alcantara, metal, carbon fiber, or wood. Four passengers lie in cushy seats with massaging functionality, enjoying a near-silent cabin that feels like a bank vault at over 100 mph. Audi's technology in the S8 was considered cutting edge at the time, but lacks modern amenities like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The car is a bit dated in this respect, but for the money, it's not lacking on luxury.
The Audi S8 is not the most flashy-looking sedan, nor is it a track weapon or tech tour de force by modern standards. But with prices starting for less than the average new car, there's never been a better time to buy one. The S8 still features more power than you can reasonably use, with more luxury than you'd get in a comparably-priced brand-new mainstream car. It will cost more to own, as with most luxury cars, but it will be worth it to own such a marvel of engineering brilliance.