The Audi R8 will have a naturally aspirated V10 for as long as it lives.
For years, rumors have suggested the Audi R8 line-up will be expanded with an entry-level model incorporating the twin-turbo 2.9-liter V6 engine from the Porsche Panamera to replace the old V8 model. It all started when a leaked production schedule suggested a V6-powered model will be revealed this year in time for the arrival of the facelifted 2019 Audi R8.
At one point, it looked like the R8 V6 had been cancelled, then another report emerged claiming the more affordable R8 will go on sale later this year. However, the 2019 Audi R8 facelift was revealed a few weeks ago without a V6 option. Will there be a V6-powered Audi R8 or not, then? We now know the answer.
Speaking to Car Throttle at a launch event for the refreshed R8, the car’s project manager Bjorn Friedrich has cleared up the confusion by confirming that a V6 variant won't be happening during the current generation of the R8.
That means Audi's naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V10 will be the only powertrain available until the end of the current model’s lifecycle. “It’s the best engine for the car…We’ll stick to the V10,” he said. Friedrich also didn’t rule out the possibility of a new rear-wheel drive RWS, but couldn't confirm it either.
It remains to be seen if there will be a third-generation R8, but the future isn’t looking bright for Audi's mid-engined supercar. Audi currently has no plans to renew the R8, but it could still be revived in the future as a fully electric supercar inspired by the PB18 concept. Still, it seems fitting that the current R8 will bow out with its highly revered V10 powerplant.