It's been a while since we heard any significant updates about the Audi R8. If anything, future prospects look grim for the sleek, mid-engined Audi. Earlier this year, Audi’s global chief of sales and marketing, Hildegard Wortmann, confirmed a new R8 is apparently not in the cards for 2021.
“The R8 is an icon of our brand. But icons of the past aren’t necessarily icons of the future. A successor to the R8 won’t just be an R8 with an electric motor. It needs to be an R8 but different,” said Wortmann in an interview with Top Gear. With that, one also has to wonder if the next R8 will still be called R8 in the first place.
However, there is a report from Germany that might be good news for R8 fans. According top Auto Bild, we can expect an all-new R8 as early as 2023. The publication didn't delve much into details, but they did make a few interesting predictions.
They said that the 2023 R8 will likely make use of the 4.0-liter V8 engine. If that's the case, it spells the end of the R8's naturally aspirated era. The 4.0-liter V8 packs a pair of turbochargers with power ranging from 453 horsepower (338 kilowatts) to 641 horsepower (478 kilowatts). This engine is used in a wide variety of Volkswagen Auto Group models, from Audi RS models to the Lamborghini Urus.
Auto Bild reckons the 2023 R8 will have about 700 horsepower (515 kilowatts) and have some form of hybrid assist. That said, the publication adds that we shouldn't rule out an all-electric model. Besides, Audi dabbled in a battery-powered R8 several years ago. Dubbed the R8 e-Tron, it wasn't exactly a smash hit with less than 100 units sold during its production run. With EVs now well in the mainstream, Audi could have another crack at an electric supercar down the line.
For now, there is no official confirmation from Audi if they will continue the R8 bloodline. It seems that we'll have to wait a few years to know if they will push through with it.