Entry-Level Audi R8 to get twin-turbo V6 from the Porsche Panamera

Audi and Porsche have been working together on a new series of V6 and V8 engines, called the KoVoMo engine family. One of these new engines, a 2.9 liter twin-turbocharged V6, powers the new Porsche Panamera, in its first application. Now, we’re hearing that the very same twin-turbo V6 will power the new entry-level Audi R8.

In Panamera-guise, the 2.9 liter twin-turbo engine belts out an impressive 440 hp, while running just .4 bar of boost. It’s possible that when it debuts in the Audi R8, it could be making near, or over, 500 hp. That would put it right in line with the Mercedes-AMG GT S and Porsche 911 Turbo, which is exactly the sort of competition Audi wants to gain with an entry-level R8. The old Audi R8 V8 did that job respectably. But now that the four-ringed supercar is V10-only, it resides in a realm filled with Lamborghinis, Ferraris and McLarens.

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In addition to powering the Audi R8, the very same 2.9 liter twin-turbo V6 will be powering the upcoming Audi RS4 and RS5, both previously packing 4.2 liter V8s. Expect around 450 hp for both cars, which isn’t far off from the Panamera. While that’s the same as the old V8 RS4 and RS5, this new twin-turbo engine will pack far more torque. We’re also hearing that the same 2.9 liter engine will also power the upcoming Audi RS Q5.

There has been speculation on whether or not the Audi R8 would get an entry-level variant. Most enthusiasts were pretty upset at the demise of Audi’s brilliant V8, so many were hoping to get that back. Unfortunately, the 4.2 liter naturally-aspirated V8 will die with the current RS5. But this new 2.9 liter twin-turbo V6 should be an absolute beast of an engine. Plus, it’s partially by Porsche, so there’s some bragging rights that come with it.

Nico DeMattia

I've been in love with cars since I was a kid, specifically German cars. Now I get to drive them talk about them on the internet.