July 26, 2021

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2021 Audi R8

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What kind of car is the 2021 Audi R8? What does it compare to?

The 2021 Audi R8 is a V-10-powered mid-engine supercar related to the Lamborghini Huracán. Offered as a coupe or roadster, it’s a visual stunner with thrilling acceleration and track-ready handling. Rivals include the Porsche 911, Chevrolet Corvette, Nissan GT-R, and Mercedes-Benz AMG GT.

Is the 2021 Audi R8 a good car?

Review continues below

It’s a fantastic car that’s loads of fun for the privileged few. It’s a conservative but elegant take on the supercar, and it comes at a discount versus most other mid-engine rivals. Fast, beautiful, and agile, we rate it a 5.8 out of 10 overall. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

What’s new for the 2021 Audi R8?

Audi revives the rear-wheel-drive R8 for 2021, appropriately tagging it the R8 RWD. It’s available for both the coupe and roadster body styles, and it slots in as the base model with the less powerful 532-hp engine. The former 562-hp R8 V10 base models have been discontinued.

The R8’s design is highlighted by black side blades that work as air intakes. Audi’s trapezoidal grille works well with the wide, low-slung stance to create a techy, though restrained look. The roadster features a power soft top. Inside, the R8 is sporty, elegantly appointed, and driver-focused. It seats two in comfort, but has little room for their stuff. 

The R8’s aluminum and carbon-fiber construction teams with its layout to provide great weight balance that sends the power to the tarmac efficiently, especially with all-wheel drive. It darts into and out of corners and grips tenaciously on the road or track, but it rides well enough to drive on a regular basis. 

Nestled in that advanced platform is a 5.2-liter V-10 mated to a quick-acting 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transaxle. The R8 V10 Performance model increases output to 602 hp and enables a 3.3-second 0-60 mph time. It’s a type of engine we won’t see much longer, with a throaty sound, a progressive throttle, and thrilling acceleration.

How much does the 2021 Audi R8 cost?

The R8 starts at $151,595 for the coupe and $156,395 for the roadster. It comes standard with heated power-adjustable seats, extended leather upholstery, navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and magnetic dampers.

Unfortunately, Audi skimps on safety, a sign of the car’s aging platform. The R8 comes only with front and rear parking sensors. Automatic emergency braking, which we deem essential, isn’t offered.

Where is the Audi R8 made?

Audi builds the R8 in Germany.

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