Audi_R8_V10_plusHaving already driven the Audi R8 at the Audi sportscar experience last year, I was in a position to figure out the very slight difference between the R8 and the newly-launched R8 V10 plus, which I drove at the Buddh International Circuit (the Formula 1 track near Delhi) on the day of its launch.

Now, designing a top-end sportscar is one of the greatest challenges in car design, but improving upon a top-end sportscar is even more so. Audi, though, has made the R8 more sportier, more powerful and fascinating, but the difference is not too much. The R8 V10 plus is powered by a 5200cc V10 engine producing a mammoth power of 404kW@8000rpm and a torque of 540Nm@6500rpm. It goes from 0-100 kmph in just 3.5 seconds (0.4 seconds faster than the R8) before touching a top speed of 317 kmph (3 kmph faster than the R8). The end result is that in the world of sportscars, Audi R8 V10 plus now has few parallels—the ones that immediately come to mind are the legendary Prosche 911 and Lamborghini Gallardo. And where the R8 V10 plus does stand out, especially from the Gallardo, is that the R8 can be a usable sportscar—one you can relatively easily drive on good Indian roads.

The R8 V10 plus comes at a hefty price tag of R2.05 crore (ex-showroom, Maharashtra), which is still less than the 911 and the Gallardo, but costs almost R50 lakh more than the R8. So the car will have two kinds of buyers—one who is ready to trade in R50 lakh extra for a little more power and finesse than the R8, and the other who feels that the V10 plus is a whole lot ‘value for money’ than the 911 and the Gallardo. We do have a few such people around.