Audi has unveiled the all-new Audi A8, effectively ushering in its new design language and a new era for the brand.
With the forth-generation A8, which competes directly with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7 Series, Audi hopes to gain a bigger slice of a segment dominated by the latter. It is instantly distinguished from its predecessor by a massive single-frame grille that occupies most of the front fascia, delivering a more muscular look.
As you move to the rear, it is very clear that the new A8 modern and clean styling is inspired by the Prologue concept. It’s not going to win any styling awards, but it has a stately enough presence to make things not too boring.
Fortunately, there is more than meets the eye, as most of Audi’s new executive sedan’s selling points are technical rather than aesthetic. The interior is a tour de force, featuring a clean and very modern design highlighted by three screens and the lack of buttons. A foot massaging function? You get that many other top-notch premium features — just you name it.
There is a strong focus on highly automated driving systems that will gradually proliferate throughout Audi’s lineup. The A8 can drive itself and park itself. Drivers benefit from Audi AI Traffic Jam Pilot, which can take over driving on freeways and highways up to speeds of 37.3 mph, allowing you to take your hands off the steering wheel permanently, though it is currently not advisable that you sleep, read or text while the car is in motion.
The Audi AI remote parking pilot and Audi AI remote garage pilot autonomously steer the A8 into and out of a parking space or a garage, with the driver tasked with monitoring all maneuvers whether in the car or not.
As for power, the new A8 will be offered with a range of engines that all utilize a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. European buyers will have the choice of a 286-hp 3.0L TDI diesel engine and a 340-hp 3.0L TFSI V6 at launch. Two eight-cylinder engines — 435-hp 4.0L TDI and 460-hp 4.0L TFSI — will follow, and then a 6.0L W12 engine later on.
European sales of the all-new, 2018 Audi A8 and A8 L begin in fall 2017 with pricing starting at 90,600 euros (~$103,300 USD) for the normal wheelbase model or 94,100 euros (~$107,400 USD) for the stretched A8 L. North American sales commence in spring 2018.
Are you pleased with how the fourth-gen Audi A8 turned out? Will you choose it over a Mercedes-Benz S-Class or BMW 7 Series?