Not much is going to stop this stealthy, armored limo.
In Russia, the ultimate Audi A8 has just been launched: the long-wheelbase A8 L Security. Designed for a specific - and highly valued - clientele who demand maximum protection no matter what the situation, the A8 L Security is reinforced with ultra-tough materials to withstand all manner of violent attacks. It's the kind of car that Tom Cruise could have used as he was running away from an exploding Kremlin in 2011's action film Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol.
The modifications made to the A8 L meet the VR9/VR10 protection classification. Which means that this special A8 can shield occupants from bullets as powerful as .50 caliber due to a polycarbonate layer used to achieve this standard of protection. That's just scratching the surface because everything - from the chassis to the electronics - has been revised to meet the stringent requirements of an armored vehicle. All told, it took 400 hours of work in a dedicated facility, where vehicles were tested with sniper rifle rounds, automatic weapon fire, and yes, grenades.
To cope with a gas attack or an environment that becomes engulfed with smoke, the A8 L Security is fitted with two cylinders filled with compressed air, ensuring the continued safety of occupants if a situation this dire should arise. The ventilation system will automatically prevent polluted air from entering the cabin. PAX emergency running tires are fitted - even if they're completely flat, the Audi can be driven at a speed of around 50 mph and for a distance just shy of 50 miles.
The cabin is further strengthened by the use of aramid fiber, a special aluminum alloy, and high-strength steel. In the event of a fire, an extinguishing system with nozzles located under the hood, within the underbody, and even in the fuel tank works to contain the blaze. It's serious stuff, and there are few cars we'd rather be in should some kind of apocalyptic event take place.
Of course, being an A8, this is still a full-size luxury sedan of the highest caliber. That means that customers get a powerful V8 borrowed from the S8 with 563 horsepower, although it does have to contend with much more heft. The A8 L Security has a curb weight starting at a titanic 8,708 pounds. It can still reach 62 mph in a respectable 6.3 seconds, though, somehow. The luxurious cabin is nearly indistinguishable from the regular A8 L, with fine leather/wood trim, power-adjustable seats with massage, and a rather appropriately named Bang & Olufsen sound system to drown out pesky grenade blasts.
Because anonymity is the name of the game for an armored vehicle, it's impossible to tell the A8 L Security apart from the A8 L, and that's absolutely intentional. While Audi sedans are often criticized for blending into the background too much, the stealthy look works a charm in this application. Of course, if you want your life to be saved with a bit more bling, you can always get an armored Lincoln Navigator.
Protection from man-made elements doesn't come cheaply, though - in Russia, the Audi A8 L Security costs the equivalent of $750,000.