There are major changes coming to the Audi brand as it looks towards the future of electrification. Unfortunately for some, this involves the Audi R8, one of the last cars to use a V10, which is more than likely going to be reborn as a fully-electric supercar in the near future. Audi Sport Managing director Oliver Hoffman hints at this during a recent interview with Top Gear.
“There’s no decision yet regarding the technology and platform of the next-generation R8. But with this next generation, we have to fulfil all the regulations worldwide. That means it will be a car with an electrification part,” Hoffmann told Top Gear.
This hints at a hybrid powertrain, but with Audi now pushing the e-Tron brand, it’s highly likely that it will indeed be fully electric. This means they won’t bat an eyelid at emissions regulations, too. What they will have to be careful of is the car’s weight, but with a higher horsepower and torque output, this shouldn’t affect its straight-line performance.
However, we will miss the howl of one of the last remaining V10s in production. But Hoffmann says they’re working on that:
“We’re working very hard to design a special electric sound. So one way you can do this is to have the same noise as in combustion. So synthetic sound. But this is not the right answer. And I think in the future – my opinion – you will have a special sound for electric cars, and we will see a differentiation in the brands,” Hoffmann told Top Gear.
Hoffmann has been fighting for the V10 to remain at the front of Audi’s portfolio, often expressing this in previous interviews. But with emissions regulations become ever more stringent, we’re struggling to see how the V10 can survive. Let’s cross our fingers that Audi can do something about the sound. But for now, here’s a video of the huge powerplant playing its best tune.