One of Audis more under-the-radar cars, one more ways than one, is the Audi S8. It debuted at the same time as the Audi RS6 and RS Q8, so it was a bit overshadowed by those two incredible cars. However, the S8, despite the lack of enthusiasm around it, might actually be the best Audi in the lineup.
The Audi S8 also flies under the radar due to its looks. On the outside, it’s difficult to tell the difference between the S8 and the standard A8. That is, until its driver puts their foot down.
Under the hood is a 4.0 liter twin-turbocharged V8, which makes 563 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque. That’s only about thirty fewer ponies than the Audi RS6 Avant. However, shockingly, the Audi S8 is actually quicker than the RS6 Avant. Achilles uses his timing gear to record a 0-60 mph run and the S8 did it in 3.4 seconds, which is a couple of tenths faster than the RS6 typically runs. That’s remarkable in a car that weighs as heavy as the S8.
More than that, though, it’s actually great to drive. Its ride is fantastic, with a lovely suppleness that’s on-par with the much slower, much less capable Audi A8. Despite having a comfy ride, it’s also remarkably composed, able to carve up corners far more adeptly than any luxo-barge has the right to. Of course, it’s no hot-hatch on a twisty road but its capabilities are far greater than its size and weight would suggest.
Considering the Audi S8’s breadth of ability, it’s hard to argue against it, as Audi’s best vehicle. Personally, I’d still take the ever-so-slightly slower Audi RS6 Avant because… wagon. But the Audi S8 is a remarkably good luxury performance missile and one of the best values in that segment you can find.