The cars are surprisingly well matched.
Ah, the distinctive sound of a V10 engine. There are a handful of cars that make use of the 10-pot, and this drag racing video features two that are arguably the most well-known. The Dodge Viper used a V10 exclusively during its nearly three-decade production run. The Audi R8 has a Lamborghini-sourced V10, and now we see how both cars stack up against each other in a contest of speed.
It’s a rather appropriate showdown, as both cars feature naturally aspirated V10 engines and carry just two people. Track Day on YouTube recently posted a series of drag race videos lining up front-engine and mid-engine cars to whittle a broad field of competitors down to just two. This clip represents the final showdown – front-engine versus mid-engine.
The cars aren’t entirely equal, however. Aside from the engine placement, the Viper is slightly modified with headers and an engine tune. The video says its 8.4-liter V10 develops around 700 horsepower (522 kilowatts), which sounds like a very unfair fight for the second-generation R8 and its 532-hp (397 kW) mill. However, The R8 has all-wheel drive and a quick-shifting dual-clutch transmission, and its engine isn’t stock, either. Fitted with a stage 2 tune and an exhaust upgrade, the Audi is said to develop 670 hp (500 kW). This should be a good fight after all.
The format for the race is a bit different too. Rather than launching from a stop on a quarter-mile strip, the action takes place on a runway with a rolling start. That negates the Audi’s all-wheel-drive advantage, but it doesn’t stop the car from winning the first sprint. Admittedly, the Audi driver seems to jump the gun just a bit on the launch, and though the Viper gains ground, it’s not enough for a win.
Gallery: 2019 Audi R8: First Drive
The second run sees a more even start, with the Viper possibly getting a slight advantage. It’s an advantage that’s held throughout the pull, with the burly American machine finishing well ahead of the Audi. This rolling run also started at a slower speed – 30 mph compared to 40 mph for the first race. It’s unclear if the slower speed was an advantage for the Viper.
With a win in each column, the stage is set for a deciding third race but sadly, technical issues prevented that from happening. As such, we’re left with something of a quandary. Stock for stock, the Viper would seem to have a clear advantage, but racing from a dig would certainly give Audi a tremendous advantage. Perhaps the real winner here is us, as we get to sit back and enjoy a 20-cylinder symphony of supercars in action.