Near perfect Audi R8 gets even better
This author has had the pleasure of driving some of the world’s finest automobiles, but his time in the Audi R8 V10 Spyder stands out as his favorite drive in any car. The fact is that the Audi R8 V10 Spyder (which means convertible) with the manual transmission is/was pretty much the perfect 2-door super car. Insanely fast, incredibly responsive, fun, classy, high quality, make that extremely high quality, and frankly a good deal price-wise. However, there were issues with the automatic transmission and the coupe version (hard-top) was not the same experience. For 2013 Audi has made some changes and we would like to list those here in order of importance for our readers.
Audi R8 S-Tronic Transmission
In its recent press release, Audi goes on and on and on about the changes to the LED headlights. There was nothing wrong with the headlights in the R8. They were wonderful. Not one person ever made a negative comment about them. Waaaay down in the press statement Audi finally gets around to mentioning that unlike the 2012 and earlier models, the automatic transmission is now going to be a dual-clutch “S-Tronic” transmission. It used to be a single clutch “R-Tronic” transmission. We at Torque News employ mechanical engineers who can write 1000 words explaining the difference between these two Audi transmissions, but here is what the summary is from the auto-press world; Old R-Tronic = bad. New S-Tronic = good. People did not like the R-Tronic. Since it is a part of the past, let’s not dwell on it. People love the S-Tronic transmission. Here is Audi’s explanation of how the S-Tronic works. We could rewrite this, but it cannot be improved; “The new 7-speed S tronic, with a three-shaft layout, is less than 23.62 inches in length. Two multi-plate clutches lying behind one another (a new feature), serve two mutually independent sub-transmissions; gears are shifted directly as the clutches alternately open and close. Gearshifting occurs practically without interruption of tractive power within hundredths of a second, and so dynamically, smoothly and comfortably as to be hardly noticeable.” In translation what this means is that when you gun this car, there is no loss of power during upshifts. That makes the car faster and more enjoyable.