It is not easy or economical to own a sports car in India – the sheer maintenance and service costs can eat into your budget heavily. They also have to struggle on poor roads and in chaotic traffic. But these stylish coupes and convertibles are still bought by some billionaires even if for ‘occasional use’ in rallies and races. German luxury carmakers have launched some of their super cars here and a popular one among these is the R8 V10 5.2 FSI from the stables of Audi.
The V10 trim is powered by 5204 cc V10 cylinder engine that churns out 518 bhp and 54 kgm of torque. A seven speed Stronic ‘box controls the car. Here’s an account of the features and styling attributes:
A large hood concealing that very powerful engine is angled with steeply raked windshield for an aerodynamic super car profile. The hexagonal grille looks stretched and has horizontal slats and the 4 rings sit on the centre of bonnet edge. Split headlamps have been redesigned in the facelifted trim and they are fortified with LED technology as in other Audi cars. The outside rear view mirrors (ORVMs) get a band of turn indicator. For alloy wheel size you can choose between 18 and 19 inch options. With a well defined curve and sleek door panel design, the coupe has characteristically super car looks. At the back, tail lamps are also optimised with LED edges and large exhaust outlets feature on either side of the bumper.
The large doors open to reveal a well designed cockpit with two leather upholstered sports seats. Housed within a frame on the centre console, the MMI screen is placed below the central AC vents. Switches and knobs have a meaty feel and are easily reachable from the driver’s seat. Touches of aluminium on the fascia and internal door panels, as also the small gear selector lever with silver finish, contrast aesthetically against the all black cabin. Even in a well shrouded instrument console, the two large dials have been housed in separate cases. MMI display for other information such as time and temperature is between the two. The multi function steering wheel is flat bottomed and has paddle shifters.
Driver and co-driver of an Audi R8 V10 5.2 FSI would seldom lean back in their seats to gingerly enjoy this car at slow speeds – it’s a fast and furious coupe for racing tracks. But yes there is a music system and you can play CDs, MP3 files for entertainment. USB devices can also be plugged in and Bluetooth connectivity is standard.
Automatic climate control feature maintains ideal temperature for two people in the compact cabin. The driver can easily slip into a comfortable position by electronically adjusting the seat for height & lumbar support. The steering wheel also has tilt and telescopic settings. Co-driver’s seat again is power adjustable and both the sport seats are heated for more comfort. Gear shift paddles mounted on steering wheel column, cruise control, hill start assist and parking assist are driver centric features. With day/night cabin rear view mirror and power adjustable, retractable ORVMs it becomes convenient to get a clear vision of the road behind and vehicles following the car. A big glove box before the co-driver’s seat and cup holders on the central console provide space for storing small articles.
The high strength exterior shell and a reinforced cockpit with side intrusion beams make Audi R8 V10 5.2 FSI a secure car. Thanks to Quattro four wheel drive technology, proper traction is assured at all speeds but the coupe is also equipped with electronic stability program and anti slip regulator for more safety. Anti lock braking system, electronic brake pressure distribution and brake assist are standard. Tyre pressure monitoring is also offered and there are front and side airbags for driver and co-driver. Seat belts have load limiters and pretensioners.
The price tag on this super car by Audi is Rs 1.80 crore (ex showroom price Delhi). It may seem ridiculously expensive but then that is how sports cars are. Compared to a Lamborghini Gallardo that also has a V10 engine, this one is still ‘affordable’.