- In 2023, Audi will offer 333 rear-wheel drive R8 GT special editions.
- The rear-wheel-drive Audi R8 GT bumps the output of its 5.2-liter V-10 from 562 to 602 hp.
- To better manage wheel slip from the rear axle, the electronic stability control now offers seven settings, from minimum to maximum slip.
Until now, if you wanted to get a lot of power from Audi P8, you had to upgrade to an all-wheel drive model. In 2023, Audi will offer a special version of the R8 GT, a rear-wheel-drive coupe with a more powerful version of the 602-hp 5.2-liter V-10. and 413 lb-ft of torque previously only available in the Quattro. Audi says the GT will hit 62 mph in 3.4 seconds and have a top speed of 199 mph.
The R8 will also have quicker gear changes with a new gear for the 7-speed dual-clutch transmission to increase top speed and make gear changes quicker.
What is special about the Special Edition
Only 333 special edition rear-wheel drive R8 GT coupes will be available, distinguishable from other R8s by black badges including the new R8 GT emblem. For wind tunnel-tested stability and increased showroom cred, the GT comes with a high-gloss carbon fiber front splitter, side skirts, rear cowls, a diffuser and a tall gooseneck rear wing. Not only do the badges and air scoops look menacingly Northern, but if you peek through the rear hatch at the V-10 engine, even the intake manifold on the GT is black. Basically, it looks like a ZL1 1LE R8.
Inside it reflects The first generation R8 GT with a black and red interior, including red seat belts. Floor mats and seats declare the GT’s special status, and owners can identify their place in the order line with the special edition’s serial number built into the carbon fiber center console.
Rear wheel drive, now with optional Slip-N-Slide
We liked it Rear wheel drive R8 for its more playful driving characteristics, and Audi is leaning towards that with the R8 GT. The rear axle now offers a rear torque mode, which allows the traction and stability control system to set one of seven different programmed curves, from more to less slip. This is controlled by a knob on the steering wheel for those last minute drifting decisions. All kidding aside, the ability to adjust the stability controls means that the R8 can be tailored to suit different drivers or increasing confidence on the track.
The GT will weigh 44 pounds less than the R8 Coupe Performance RWD. That’s partly due to the lightweight forged 20-inch wheels wrapped in Michelin Sport Cup 2 rubber. Ceramic brakes are standard on the GT, as are sport seats and a performance sports suspension with a carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic anti-roll bar. A lightweight bar and aluminum suspension components also help the GT keep weight down.
The real loss here is something Audi only hints at in the headline of its press release, which reads, “Goodbye V-10 engine.” Unsurprisingly, the V-10’s days are numbered, but if this is the start of last year’s Audi festivities, can we expect more special R8s in 2023?
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