The 2012 Audi R8 GT Spyder limited edition.  Photo courtesy of Audi.

Audi announces pricing for the 2012 R8 GT Spyder limited edition

The beautifully bodacious, drop dead gorgeous, hand-built Audi R8 GT Spyder limited edition will be restricted to only 333 cars worldwide – individually numbered on the gearshift knob – with only 50 coming to the U.S. at the staggering price of $210,000, excluding a $1,220 destination and delivery charge plus applicable taxes and license plate fees.

Not that it isn’t worth every penny – it’s just a bit beyond the ways and means of all but that top two percent who are afraid they might pay too much tax already.

Be that as it may, this is one impressive vehicle. Lighter and more powerful than before, the Audi R8 GT Spyder slurps down petrol through a 5.2-liter direct injection V10 producing 560 horsepower. Thanks to lighter weight and heightened performance engine, it will take you from zero to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds on your way to a top speed of 197 mph.

In reality, the mileage matters little as so few will be built and, of those, chances are annual miles will be a slight fraction of the average vehicle – but wouldn’t it be fun to take one of these out on the Autobahn, after a little time spent learning to handle the reins of all those horses.

Yes it's a serious investment, but could you own one and keep it in the garage all the time? Wouldn’t it take a soulless zombie disconnected from life’s joys to do that?

Audi managed to take 187.39 lbs off the R8 GT Spyder’s curb weight by using an ultra-light magnesium frame and carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP) for the soft-top compartment cover and the large rear side panels. CFRP is also used for the fixed rear spoiler that adds downforce to the rear axle.
The Audi R8 GT Spyder delivers extreme lateral acceleration and unequaled responsiveness thanks to its stiffly calibrated sport suspension and ten millimeter lower stance, compared to the R8 V10 Spyder. Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive system hugs the road with 19-inch wheels while ventilated and cross-drilled rotors enable quick, crisp braking.

The black interior can be decked out with stitching in the buyer’s choice of Titanium Gray or Crimson Red. Alcantara is used for seat inserts, the flat-bottom sport steering wheel, hand brake cover and to frame the windshield.

Notable standard features include dual-stage front airbags with knee bags, head and thorax airbags in front, 8-piston calipers on the front brakes and heated sport seats that are 10-way power adjustable with 4-way lumbar support. Also standard is a sound system utilizing 7 speakers and a 5-channel amplifier boasting 140 Watts and a seatbelt microphone to enhance the use of Bluetooth phones.

The limited edition will also have standard an R tronic, 6-speed sequential shift-by-wire gearbox with sports mode, carbon fiber matte interior monoposto and door handle inlays along with a host of other R8 GT specific enhancements.

Optional equipment includes a navigation system and an iPod interface (replacing a 6-disc CD changer) to a 495-watt Bang & Olufsen sound system with12 speakers. (Can you say AWESOME? We knew you could.) Then there’s carbon ceramic brakes, a choice of Titanium Finish 19" 5-arm-double-spoke-design aluminum alloy or Forged Aluminum 19" 5-twin-spoke-Y in matte silver wheels with summer performance tires. You may also select carbon fiber matte doors and center console panels as well as a windscreen framed in Nappa leather.

Deliveries of the Audi R8 GT Spyder will begin this month.

So go down to the local Audi dealer, sit in one of the nicer models, breathe in the air, touch the surfaces – especially the shifter – and then go buy a dozen Powerball tickets.

Do you believe in miracles?

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