AUDI A8 L
Following its international unveiling back in April, Audi has this week shown its new 2011 Audi A8 L at the Australian International Motor Show.
Entering as the stretched and range-topping model in the 2011 Audi A8 line-up, the A8 L is also now confirmed for an Australian market debut in the first quarter of next year.
Powered by a 247kg 6.3 litre W12 engine, the Audi A8 L offers 373kW and a huge 625Nm of torque. Audi has not revealed the A8 L's weight, but thanks to its Audi Space Frame aluminium body, the German carmaker says the A8 limo is 40 percent lighter than a comparable steel body.
With a sportscar-like 0-100km/h time of 4.9 seconds and an electronically-limited top speed of 250km/h, that 40 percent saving offers significant advantages.
Power is transferred to all four wheels through Audi's new eight-speed automatic transmission and the legendary quattro all-wheel-drive system. Torque is split 40-60 with a rear-wheel bias.
Measuring nearly 5267mm long, the A8 L is 130mm longer than the already lengthy 2011 A8. Its wheelbase has grown by the same amount, to 3122mm. Width remains unchanged at 1949mm, although height has increased by 2mm.
Inside, it's the rear of the A8 L that is the most noteworthy. A full-length centre console - replete with luxurious features such as a folding table and a fridge - passes between the power-adjustable seats.
“The A8 L models are not just flagships for the Audi range. They are showcases of the combined knowledge and skill applied by our thousands of engineers and designers to the craft of building cars; the world’s best cars,” Uwe Hagen, Managing Director of Audi Australia said.
“The fourth-generation A8 has already set a new standard in dynamic luxury cars and now the arrival of the long-wheelbase versions demonstrates just how serious Audi is about attaining leadership in all of the important segments of the premium and luxury car market.”
Comfort is further assured through ten remote-controlled massaging air bladders in each seat, along with a power-adjustable folding ottoman built into the rear of the front passenger seat.
A full 25 motors manage the A8 L's four-zone climate control, and a 1400w 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system, along with two 10.2-inch LCD displays, provide entertainment for rear occupants.
The W12 engine will be the standard powertrain when the A8 L launches overseas this year, with smaller diesel and petrol engines to follow in the future. Prices have yet to be revealed, and local details are as yet unknown.
Australian pricing and specification for the Audi A8 L will be announced closer to launch in the first quarter of 2011.