Audi A8 L 4.2 TDI : Road Test
Considering that this big boy from Ingolstadt has been around since as long as 1994, the latest A8 is only in its third generation right now which means Audi has been taking it slow to get it right. While the latest version has been around for over a year, Audi has now introduced the A8 with the stonking 4.2 TDI engine. ZigWheels puts it to the test!
Power, Torque and then some!
One doesn’t even have to read the specs to know what lies under that long hood. The rumble at start up followed by the symphony with which this Audi clears its throat is enough to tell you that something ‘very’ large is lurking in there and large it is. All of 4134cc with eight cylinders arranged in a 90-degree 'V'. And there’s more. Fuel is sprayed via piezo injectors at 2000 bar while massive VTG twin turbochargers spool up the power at the disposal of your right foot.
Figures left most in disbelief and I don’t blame them: 350PS @ 4000rpm and a maximum twist of, wait for it… 800Nm between 1750 and 2750rpm. That’s like enough torque to pull a whole planet. And all this while promising good fuel efficiency too. This is largely thanks to common-rail technology, which injects the fuel directly into the piston combustion chamber at up to 2,000 bar. The TDI engine features innovative thermal management that cuts fuel consumption by rapidly heating up the coolant. The engine’s weight has moreover been reduced despite its greater technical complexity. An engineering marvel then? You bet!
Sportscars… move over!
So before we check the Audi’s performance, I decide to cruise and revel in its cocooned cabin. However dark clouds line up on the horizon and testing this big boy in the wet wasn’t exactly my idea of fun. Urgency being need of the hour, I depressed the accelerator a little enthusiastically and what followed was acceleration which had the intensity of a hardcore Arnold Schwarzenegger action movie. There is a very slight moment of calm before the very big storm, courtesy the big V8 lump up front. The rev counter shoots right into the powerband as all 350 horses are summoned. The 800Nm is put down via all four wheels (read quattro) as the big Audi hurtles towards the horizon.
Flat out acceleration gets this A8 to 100km/h in an unbelievable 6.6 seconds flat and that’s quick even by sportscar standards. You might also want to keep in mind that that figure is despite the almost tank like 2.2-tonne weight. Midrange is just as brutal. There is so much torque that you have to be careful driving this rocket in traffic. A slight error in judgment and you could end up destroying the bumper (or more) of the car in front.
But keep all those huge numbers in check and it can be as sublime as a cool breeze. Highways can be munched up with ease (considering this baby is meant for the autobahns) and the Audi really eggs you on to make even the shortest journey longer. Braking is just as impressive with a horde of electronics and those massive discs hauling the Audi down in no time at all. From 100km/h to nought the car came to a halt in just 3.06 seconds covering a distance of 38.8 metres. Power is nothing without control and this Audi has ample of both.
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