After three months and a few thousand kilometres, we bid farewell to The Management Fleet Audi A8 L.[Not a valid template]
|Date acquired:||January 2015|
|Kilometres this month:||4,423|
|Costs this month:||$0|
|L/100km this month:||10.9|
Much like the Volkswagen Beetle last month, our time with the Audi A8 L comes to an end under inauspicious circumstances concerning the tyres.
Yes, I know we’ve been banging on about the speed produced by that 429bhp 4-litre V8 for a while now (bear in mind 0-100kph in 4.6 seconds is pretty impressive for a premium saloon weighing the best part of two tons), but rest assured we’re not quite down to the canvas. In-between shoots we’ve managed to pick up a rogue screw in one of the treads, and have developed a slow puncture.
And yes, I also realise that after the trouble we had with the old Cadillac CTS – in which we plucked during one fateful service not one but three nails from the tyre walls – we promised we would be careful. That, coupled with the ‘Service Due’ sign on the driver information screen (with exclamation mark for full Germanic timbre) means it’s time the big A8 went back to Audi Middle East for some much respected TLC.
And boy, has it deserved it. Camera car duties over the last three months have seen the A8 swallow – on occasion – the entirety of our camera equipment and photography crew, all in perfect comfort. We’re still in two minds about those overly plastic rear footrests though…
Ditto the steering. Rarely does a premium saloon need to manoeuvre and corner like a super-lightweight Caterham, but given the Audi’s surprisingly impressive balance and blistering acceleration, it’s a shame the steering feels too overly assisted for any kind of connection to the wheels. That and the plastic paddle shifter meant hoons in the big Bavarian barge were kept to a minimum
Not that this mattered of course. The Audi went like the bejesus, looks the Monsoon Grey bees articulation genus, and boasts one of the best ride qualities we’re experienced in quite some time.
Even with a screw in the tyre.
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|Engine:||V8 / 3993cc|
|Power||435bhp @ 5100-6000rpm|
|Torque||442lb ft ft @ 1500-5000rpm|
|Transmission||Eight-speed tiptronic automatic / Quattro all-wheel drive|
|Front suspension||Adaptive air suspension with four selectable modes|
|Rear suspension||Adaptive air suspension with four selectable modes|
|Brakes||Carbon fibre-reinforced ceramic brake discs front and rear|
|Wheels||21” x 9J ‘5-arm Structure’ alloys front and rear|
|Tyres||75/35 R21 front and rear|
|Top speed:||250kph (limited)|
|Price:||$104,500 (base) / $125,200 (test model)|