Generations Timeline, Specs and Pictures


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AUDI S8   2021 2022
2021 2022

Apart from the luxurious limousine, Audi provided also an S-treatment for its flagship sedan model.
The carmaker aimed it directly at the Mercedes-AMG S-Class.

Unlike its main competitor, the S8 was available either with a standard or a long wheelbase. That made it a mix of performance and luxury. And it showed both in every detail.

When Audi refreshed the fourth generation of the A8 in 2021, it didn’t abandon the S8 model. The 2021 version sported a piano-black front fascia with a fish-net-like grille. It was a bold move in times when everyone else used hexagonal, honeycomb-style elements. Also, it used the same shiny dark areas for the side scoops and the lower part of the front bumper. In addition, the car’s designers added carbon-fiber-looking caps for the rearview mirrors, enhancing the sporty image. A discreet lip-spoiler adorned the trunk lid at the back, while on the lower side, the four oval exhausts sported a chromed finish flanking the center diffuser.

While the regular A8 was focused more on the rear-seat passengers, the S8 was centered around the driver’s needs. Sure, the seats were also comfortable, but their higher bolstering areas provided more lateral support. Like its non-S sibling, the car featured digital displays on the center stack and a TFT Audi Virtual Cockpit for the instrument panel. The latter could be configured according to the driver’s needs and preferences.

Under the hood, Audi installed a twin-turbo V8 helped by an ISG (integrated starter-generator) to reduce the turbo-lag. Moreover, its standard all-wheel-drive and adaptive suspension helped the vehicle during hard acceleration and on high-speed cornering.

Full Description and Technical Specifications
AUDI S8   2019 2021
2019 2021

The fourth generation of the Audi S8 was unveiled at the end of 2019 and it brings a host of novelties compared to its predecessor, including the addition of a mild-hybrid system based on a 48-volt architecture.
Other than the mild-hybrid system, the twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 is similar to the one found in the Audi S8 D4, but it has also received a couple of modifications, including iron-lined cylinder barrels positioned in an aluminum crankcase.

With 571 horsepower and 800 Nm (590 lb-ft) of torque on tap, sent to all four-wheel through a quattro all-wheel-drive system, the sporty luxury sedan can hit 100 kph (62 mph) from a standing start in just 3.8 seconds. Even though it also helps performance during spirited driving, the mild-hybrid 48-volt system actually works continuously to reduce fuel consumption, with up to 0.8-liters per 100 kilometers in fuel saving being possible thanks strictly to the system. The setup uses a 48-volt belt alternator starter and an additional lithium-ion battery. The braking system is truly high-performance, with the optional carbon-fiber brake discs measuring no less than 420 mm (16.5 in) on the front axle and 370 mm (14.6 in) on the rear axle while also being 9.6 kg (21.2 lb) lighter than the standard cast iron discs. No less than 38 driver assistance systems comprise the active safety systems on the new S8, and they are all managed by a new high-performance processing unit.

Full Description and Technical Specifications
AUDI S8   2013 2019
2013 2019

The Audi S8 was the strange combination of a sports car and a limousine.
The original S8 was launched in 1996 and was a shock for the world. It was a sleeper limo with an 0-60 mph (0-97 kph) in under 7 seconds. But times have changed and that figure is now a hot-hatch territory. This is why, in 2013, Audi launched a scary-fast S8 with a 0-100 kph in 4.1 seconds (0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds). That was supercar territory.

On the outside, the S8 was kept as a sleeper. Only a trained eye will notice the S8 logo printed on the big calipers for the 400 mm (15.7”) discs in the front and the 360 mm (14”) in the rear. The standard wheels were 20” equipped with 264/40 R20 tires. Another clue for the S8, besides the discreet logo, was the two elliptical exhaust tips that could be seen under the rear bumper.

The interior was as luxurious as in the rest of the Audi A8 range but had other seats, which had better side support and the S8 logo printed in several places.

The 2013 Audi S8 had a 4.0-liter V8 twin-turbo gasoline engine. The all-wheel drive transmission was different than other quattro systems from the A8 range and featured a sports center differential and adaptive air suspension fitted as standard.

Full Description and Technical Specifications
AUDI S8  D4 2012 2013
2012 2013

While the Mercedes-Benz had the AMG division that took care of its performance S-Class models, Audi offered the S models for its vehicles.
The 2012 Audi S8 was the fastest A8 in the range.

The surge for more power got the Audi to ditch the former Lamborghini V10 unit in favor of a newly developed, twin-turbo, V8 engine. With massive investments into research and development, the 2012 Audi S8 was more powerful, and faster than its predecessor.

The Audi S8 had a distinctive look from the outside. But it didn’t feature flamboyant fender flares or some crazy wings in the back. It featured the same big grille as the rest of its range, but with double-chromed lines on each slat instead of single chromed. The rearview mirrors had silver cases, that looked like aluminum. In the back, there were four tailpipes and a diffuser between them.

Inside, it was a luxurious Audi A8 with all the comfort features as the rest of its siblings. Only the more luxurious A8 W12 had more than the S8, but only S8 had sport-bucket seats for the front occupants. A new infotainment unit was on the dashboard with a retractable mode so it won’t bother the view.

Under the hood there was the 4.0-liter V8 engine with the turbochargers between the engine banks to decrease the turbo-lag. For the economic running mode, the engine could run in four cylinders. The standard transmission was an 8-speed automatic by ZF. As usual for any S-range model, it featured the quattro all-wheel-drive system from Audi.

Full Description and Technical Specifications
AUDI S8   2006 2011
2006 2011

Audi introduced the second generation S8 model at the 2005 Tokyo Auto Show.
Assembled on the Volkswagen Group D3 platform and available to the large public starting 2006, the new S8 featured a lightweight bodywork construction (ASF style) with all-aluminium panels. Also, the new model was fitted with a 5.2L V10 FSI engine (developed on the Lamborghini Gallardo 5.0L V10 unit) delivering 450 PS and 400 lb-ft of torque. New safety features included re-engineered suspension, ventilated discs, ESP, ABS with EBD and a new tire monitoring system. Car’s interior featured leather upholstery and aluminium or carbon fibre components.

Full Description and Technical Specifications
AUDI S8   1999 2003
1999 2003

Audi introduced the facelifted S8 model for the European market in 1999.
Aimed to compete against the Mercedes-Benz S55 AMG on the large luxury executive car sector, the new Audi S8 was assembled on the Volkswagen Group D2 platform and featured an Audi Space Frame monocoque in terms of bodywork construction (aluminium materials) and a redesigned grille. It was equipped with a 4.2L V8 petrol engine delivering an improved 340 PS and fitted with 5-speed tiptronic automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive. Two years later, aiming to introduce the S8 to the North American market, Audi gave it a boost in engine power of 24 PS. The model was discontinued in 2003.

Full Description and Technical Specifications
AUDI S8   1996 1999
1996 1999

Audi decided to challenge the Jaguar XJR on the large luxury car market and introduced a sportier version of the A8, the 1996 S8.
This model was based on the same Volkswagen Group D2 platform and was assembled on the Audi Space Frame technology. It featured plenty of lightweight components and was fitted with a 4.2L V8 engine delivering 340 PS and a 5-speed tiptronic automatic transmission. Its main advantage over the XJR and the later-developed Mercedes S55 AMG was the standard 4-wheel-drive. This model received a slight facelift in 1999 and a 24-PS power boost two years later to keep up with the new S55 AMG.

Full Description and Technical Specifications

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