Everything you wanted to see, and then some.

After a painstakingly long teaser campaign, the fourth-generation Audi A8 is finally here in all of its new design language glory. But is the exterior actually all-new? It’s up to you to decide. The most significant novelty is at the back thanks to the full-width taillights benefiting from OLED technology like the TT RS.

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The new flagship from Ingolstadt takes after the stunning Prologue and applies that recipe onto a fullsize sedan, albeit it dials down the concept's exciting body. Audi wants the overhauled A8 to be both sporty and luxurious to steer you away from buying a 7 or an S. Up front it utilizes matrix LED headlights with laser lighting tech in the same vein as the R8 and these flank a wider, more upright iteration of Audi’s corporate “Singleframe” grille. If you’re wondering about how big it is, the regular A8 stretches at a generous 5.17 meters (17 feet) whereas the A8 L benefits from a 13 centimeters (5.1 inches) long wheelbase.

2018 Audi A8 debut
2018 Audi A8 debut

While the exterior will generate mixed feelings, the real revolution has occurred inside the cabin. It’s vastly different than the previous A8 jam-packed with physical buttons all over the place. Its successor takes a more modern approach with a pair of touchscreens on the center console, one for the 10.1-inch MMI infotainment system and the other for the climate control and comfort settings.  The driver gets all the relevant information from the second generation of the Audi Virtual Cockpit.

With the A8 / A8 L being the most luxurious Audi has ever made, it goes without saying focus was creating a comfortable environment for those sitting in the back. There’s an OLED removable touch panel “as large as a smartphone” located between the two comfy rear seats from where the passengers will have access to a multitude of functions. HD Matrix reading lights have been installed, along with a swanky Bang & Olufsen sound system and active noise cancellation.

2018 Audi A8 debut
2018 Audi A8 debut

Besides the V6 gasoline and diesel engines we’ve already talked about in the reveal article, the A8 L will also be offered in a thrifty E-Tron Quattro guise later on. It will pair a 3.0-liter TFSI with an electric motor for a combined output of 449 horsepower (330 kilowatts) and 516 pound-feet (700 Newton-meters) of torque. Its lithium-ion battery pack will last for approximately 31 miles (50 kilometers) of electric range and will be recharged wirelessly by using an optional pad with a power output of 3.6 kW.

The V6 duo and the plug-in hybrid will be joined by a couple of V8 models and by the top-of-the-range W12 6.0-liter.

Production of the A8 and A8 L has already kicked off at the Neckarsulm factory in Germany and deliveries are slated to kick off in its domestic market by late fall.

Source: Audi

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2018 Audi A8 Launch

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The new Audi A8: future of the luxury class

  • World debut for flagship model at Audi Summit in Barcelona
  • New design language and a pioneering touch operating concept
  • Piloted driving functions to be rolled out in production Audi A8 versions from 2018

Today is where the future begins in the luxury class: The new Audi A8 makes its world debut at the Audi Summit in Barcelona. In its fourth generation, the flagship model again provides the benchmark for Vorsprung durch Technik – with a new design language, an innovative touchscreen operating concept and a systematically electrified drive. The Audi A8 is also the first production automobile in the world to have been developed for highly automated driving. From 2018, Audi will gradually be taking piloted driving functions such as parking pilot, garage pilot and traffic jam pilot into production.