After years of rumors, Audi has confirmed there are no plans for a V6 version of the R8. Bummer.
Rumors that Audi is cooking up an entry-level V6 version of the R8 have been rife for years now. It makes sense since it would fill the void left by the V8-powered R8 that was discontinued in 2015, so there is certainly room for a more affordable model in the lineup. Reports have suggested it will pack the same 2.9-liter V6 unit as the Porsche Panamera 4S and go on sale in 2019. In the Panamera, the 2.9-liter twin-turbo six unit produces 440 horsepower, but in the R8 it was expected to be tuned to deliver over 500 hp.
Just this week came the announcement that a surprise new Audi Sport model will debut at New York next week, which we speculated will be the R8 V6. Well, we can now confirm that, after years of rumors, the V6-powered Audi R8 won’t be happening after all. The news was confirmed to Road and Track by an Audi spokesperson, who categorically stated that "there is no V6 planned for the R8." That means the only version of the R8 that will be available for the foreseeable future will be the V10 model. Audi has previously hinted that a V6-powered R8 is in the works, and while it’s possible that it was originally planned, the company has clearly decided to keep the V10 as the standard model.
While there’s still plenty of life left in the current R8 for now, the future isn’t looking bright for Audi’s mid-engine supercar. In a recent interview, Audi’s R&D boss Peter Mertens confirmed that there are no plans to renew the R8 after the current-generation model. Audi Sport is currently focusing on expanding its SUV lineup with the RS Q5 and the RS Q8. The fully electric e-Tron GT was also recently announced, so we wouldn’t be surprised if Audi's future Tesla Model S rival replaces the R8 at this rate, because it certainly doesn’t seem to be very high on the automaker’s priority list right now.