VIDEO: Carwow’s Audi R8 drag race extravaganza

Everyone loves an Audi R8, am I right? It’s just such a lovable car. It’s a mid-engine, high-performance supercar from a brand typically known for sensible sedans and SUVs. The R8 is anything but sensible, though, as it’s always been a very fast, very expensive beauty. Unfortunately, the Audi R8 will soon be facing its demise and will no longer exist. After 2020, the R8 will go the way of the Dodo. So to celebrate the brand’s only supercar, Carwow put four different versions of the R8 together for a drag race.

In this new video, we see three versions of the first-gen Audi R8; the standard R8 V8, the R8 GT Spyder and the R8 LMX; take on the latest R8 V10 Performance.

Carwow’s Mat Watson drives the standard R8 V8 (424 hp and 317 lb-ft) with a six-speed manual gearbox. The Audi R8 GT Spyder gets a 5.2 liter naturally-aspirated V10 engine (560 hp and 398 lb-ft) with a six-speed single-clutch auto-manual. The Audi R8 LMX uses the same 5.2 liter V10 (570 hp and 398 lb-ft) and the same single-clutch auto manual. While the brand-new Audi R8 V10 Performance uses a similar 5.2 liter naturally-aspirated V10 (620 hp and 427 lb-ft) and a dual-clutch, seven-speed gearbox. All four cars obviously have Quattro all-wheel drive. So which is quickest?

In the standing quarter-mile, all four cars actually get off the line about the same. In fact, Watson’s car with the least power and worst launching abilities (he has to work the clutch while the others have launch control) was actually ahead for a second or two. After the first upshift, though, the more powerful, automatic-equipped cars all get ahead by quite a bit. Then, obviously, the newest Audi R8 won, with a blistering quarter-mile time of 10.27 seconds. Then, the LMX in second, the GT Spyder in third and the old-school original in a distance fourth.

Still, it’s really impressive to see how well the original R8, with the smallest and least power engine, along with the slowest-shifting gearbox, was able to launch. Up until about 30 mph, it hung right with its newer, much more powerful siblings.

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.