Audi Sport has confirmed what we’ve long suspected. Its replacement for the Audi R8 will be electric… and won’t be called the R8.
Linda Kurz, head of product marketing for Audi Sport, told CNET Roadshow the brand’s mission for the next decade is to “transform the R segment, and the R segment is going to be fully electric”.
It’s not yet clear what the next Audi R halo car will be, but it possibly won’t wear the R8 badge. It could also be a different type of vehicle to the mid-engined R8 supercar.
While the R8 continues to be sold overseas, it was dropped from the local Audi range in September this year when production of the tuned-for-Australia variant of the 5.2-litre V10 engine ended.
With the company unwilling to invest in homologating a replacement engine tune for Down Under, the two-door coupe and Spyder are now denied entry to our shores.
Whenever the R8 successor does lob, it won’t be the first electrified or fully-electric model from Audi Sport.
In 2015 the company launched the R8 e-tron. This rare beast – reportedly fewer than 100 were produced – featured two electric motors driving the rear wheels. With a total output of 340kW and 920Nm, the R8 e-tron had a 0-100km/h time of 3.9 seconds.
A T-shaped 92kWh battery pack promised to provide a driving range of around 450km using the generous NEDC standard.
By comparison, an R8 equipped with the standard 5.2-litre V10 engine had 450kW and 560Nm at its disposal, and was capable of hitting the century mark in just 3.2 seconds.
Electrified drivetrains are being prepared for upcoming RS models, while an RS variant of the e-tron GT has also been revealed.
According to Ms Kurz, by 2026 Audi Sport expects 80 per cent of RS across the world to have an electrified drivetrain.
MORE: Everything Audi R8