Audi Could Bring A Very Special R8 To America This Year

Rumor / Comments

The kind that does smokey burnouts.

Quattro all-wheel-drive may be a signature of the Audi brand but it doesn't mean every car the automaker sells is equipped with it. Back in 2018, Audi introduced the limited edition R8 RWS, which featured rear-wheel-drive instead of the R8's traditional rear-biased Quattro system. In the American market, the current 2020 Audi R8 is only available with Quattro AWD but a recent slip up by the EPA may prove that a new RWD version is coming for the 2021 model year.

The government's official fuel economy website shows ratings for a "2021 Audi R8 2WD 5.2 L, 10 cyl, Automatic" and a "2021 Audi R8 Spyder 2WD 5.2 L, 10 cyl, Automatic." These RWD models have already been introduced in Europe but it looks like we will finally get them stateside.

Audi
Audi
Fueleconomy.gov

With two fewer wheels to drive, the RWD R8 Coupe and Spyder achieve slightly better fuel economy figures of 14/23/17 mpg city/highway/combined compared to 13/20/16 mpg for the Quattro models. Since fuel economy is likely an unimportant statistic for supercar buyers, it's more important to analyze the performance. In Europe, the RWD R8 models are powered by a 5.2-liter V10 producing 533 horsepower and 398 lb-ft of torque.

This is a bit less power than the Quattro models, which produce 562 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque from the same engine in base form or 602 hp and 413 lb-ft in Performance guise. The RWD R8 is also slower to 60 mph at 3.7 seconds compared to 3.4 seconds in the base Quattro and 3.2 seconds in the Performance model.

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Audi
Audi

It may be slower off the line but the RWD R8 Coupe only weighs 3,505 pounds, dropping around 230 pounds compared to the AWD model. This means it should feel more nimble around corners and since it is less complex, should cost less as well. Audi only sold 999 units of the RWS and only around 320 of those came to the US. If you missed your opportunity to get an R8 RWS when they were new, this might be your last chance to get an R8 with RWD.

Audi
Audi
Source Credits: EPA

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