We’re all waiting with bated breathe to see what Audi has in store for us with the next-generation A8. According to the folks in Ingolstadt, the next-gen Audi A8 will be the most technologically-advanced car in its class and come with Level 3 autonomous driving. That’s exciting and very important for a brand that has to contend with the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class. However, the car we’re even more excited for is the next-gen Audi S8, the performance variant, and it was just caught testing at the Nurburgring.
In this new spy video from Automotive Mike, we get to see the S8 doing hot laps around the ‘Ring and it looks pretty damn fast. While, from the outside, we can’t tell much about the way it looks, we can see that it is an S8. Firstly, that speed is pretty evident, as it simply fires out of corners and rockets down the straights. But we can also seem the quad exhaust pipes at the back and it looks a bit lower than the standard car we’ve seen testing. So it certainly does seem like an Audi S8 from here.
We’d love to be able to hear the exhaust note but it’s difficult with the sound of screaming tires being punished beyond their capabilities. The current-gen Audi S8 Plus makes over 600 hp, so we can only imagine what sort of monster power figures this new car will make. If it’s in the realm of 640 – 650 hp, that’s about Ford GT level power in an all-wheel drive luxury sedan.
The video also shows the S8 on the road, as AMM seems to have followed it off the ‘Ring and got behind it in traffic. We can see it up close from behind and see those four exhausts giving it away. However, that’s about all we get to see as the car is very heavily camouflaged and the drivers of it clearly had no intention of being followed. But we can tell that it’s a very quiet cruiser on the road, as there was no exhaust note to be heard and it seemed rather docile.
As of right now, there’s no official info on what sort of powertrain the 2019 Audi S8 will have. However, we can guess that it will use a variant of the same 4.0 liter twin-turbo V8 in the new Porsche Panamera Turbo, an engine that was jointly developed between Porsche and Audi. It will also likely use the brand’s ubiquitous ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic gearbox. The current Audi S8 Plus can get from 0-60 mph in about 3.8 seconds. Considering this next car will be lighter and more powerful, there’s a chance it could do the same sprint in the low three-second range.
Expect to see the next-gen Audi S8 mid-late 2018 and be sold as 2019 models.