2012 Audi R8

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Key Specs
Our Take
Overview
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
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Key Specs

of the 2012 Audi R8. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Performance potential
  • Handling potential

The Bad

  • Sideblade air intake appearance
  • Available MMI controller

Notable Features of the 2012 Audi R8

  • Mid-engine sports car
  • V-10 engine option
  • 430-hp V-8 standard
  • Coupe or convertible
  • Limited-edition GT coupe
  • All-wheel drive

2012 Audi R8 Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview

This two-seat mid-engine sports car is named after an Audi Le Mans-winning racecar and is available as a hardtop coupe or Spyder roadster. Like the Lamborghini Gallardo with which it competes, the R8 has a mid-mounted engine. It features a weight-saving aluminum body and Quattro all-wheel drive, and both the coupe and convertible are available with an optional V-10 engine.

(Skip to details on the: R8 Sypder)

New for 2012
A new top-level trim of the R8 is available this year. With only 333 scheduled to be built, the limited-edition GT model uses carbon fiber to trim 180 pounds and features a 560-horsepower version of Audi's 5.2-liter V-10 engine. The R8 GT comes only with the R tronic sequential gearbox, with each production unit number engraved on the shift knob. The GT model receives aerodynamic improvements including a carbon fiber front bumper as well as a full-width fixed carbon fiber rear spoiler. The interior has carbon fiber and Alcantara accents and the R8 GT badge throughout.

Exterior
The R8's front end is dominated by air-intake grates and Audi's trapezoidal grille. Distinguishing features include sideblade air intakes behind the doors that route air to the engine. Rectangular LED taillights are standard, and a power-extendable rear spoiler provides additional downforce at high speeds.

The V-10 model gets larger side air intakes, unique rocker panel shaping, "V 10" front fender badges and a larger rear diffuser. Exterior features include:...

Vehicle Overview

This two-seat mid-engine sports car is named after an Audi Le Mans-winning racecar and is available as a hardtop coupe or Spyder roadster. Like the Lamborghini Gallardo with which it competes, the R8 has a mid-mounted engine. It features a weight-saving aluminum body and Quattro all-wheel drive, and both the coupe and convertible are available with an optional V-10 engine.

(Skip to details on the: R8 Sypder)

New for 2012
A new top-level trim of the R8 is available this year. With only 333 scheduled to be built, the limited-edition GT model uses carbon fiber to trim 180 pounds and features a 560-horsepower version of Audi's 5.2-liter V-10 engine. The R8 GT comes only with the R tronic sequential gearbox, with each production unit number engraved on the shift knob. The GT model receives aerodynamic improvements including a carbon fiber front bumper as well as a full-width fixed carbon fiber rear spoiler. The interior has carbon fiber and Alcantara accents and the R8 GT badge throughout.

Exterior
The R8's front end is dominated by air-intake grates and Audi's trapezoidal grille. Distinguishing features include sideblade air intakes behind the doors that route air to the engine. Rectangular LED taillights are standard, and a power-extendable rear spoiler provides additional downforce at high speeds.

The V-10 model gets larger side air intakes, unique rocker panel shaping, "V 10" front fender badges and a larger rear diffuser. Exterior features include:

  • 19-inch alloy wheels standard
  • Optional carbon fiber sideblade
  • Optional LED headlights
  • Transparent canopy in rear allows view of the engine
  • Quad exhaust pipes on V-8 models
  • Dual exhaust tips on V-10 models

Interior
The R8's two-person cabin has standard sport seats covered in leather or Alcantara simulated suede and leather. A navigation system with Audi's Multi Media Interface system is available. MMI controls vehicle settings via a knob and buttons on the center of the dashboard. Audi says there's room for two golf bags behind the seats. V-10 models get different instrument-cluster labeling. Interior features include:

  • Standard six-CD changer
  • Flat-bottom steering wheel for easier entry and exit
  • Standard Bluetooth hands-free phone interface
  • HomeLink garage-door opener
  • Available carbon fiber interior trim
  • Available Bang & Olufsen stereo
  • Available backup camera

Under the Hood
The standard 4.2-liter V-8 engine makes 430 hp and 316 pounds-feet of torque. The base 5.2-liter V-10 makes 525 hp and 391 pounds-feet of torque. The version in the R8 GT makes 560 hp, and Audi claims a top speed of 199 mph.

The R8 has an adaptive four-wheel-independent suspension. Similar to GM's Magnetic Ride Control, the Audi Magnetic Ride system can pass an electrical charge through the shocks' fluid to instantly change its damping properties. The driver can select two modes — one geared toward performance and the other designed for comfort. Mechanical features include:

  • Quattro all-wheel drive
  • Standard six-speed manual transmission
  • Optional six-speed R tronic sequential manual with automatic mode
  • R tronic features Audi's launch control system
  • R tronic can be shifted by console lever or steering-wheel paddles

Safety
Safety features include:

  • Four-wheel-disc antilock brakes with traction control
  • Electronic stability system
  • Seat-mounted side-impact airbags
  • Knee airbags
  • Seat belt pretensioners
  • Optional carbon ceramic brakes

R8 Spyder
Audi added a roadster version of its R8 supercar for the 2011 model year with the debut of the R8 Spyder. Like the coupe, the R8 Spyder comes with either a 4.2-liter V-8 or a 5.2-liter V-10 engine,  and buyers have a choice of either a six-speed manual transmission or the six-speed R tronic sequential manual with paddle shifters.

The curvaceous lines of the R8 coupe haven't been compromised in its transformation to a convertible, and although the vents stretching rearward from the driver and passenger seats are neat design cues, it's a shame you can't see the mid-engine like you can in the hardtop R8. LED headlights are available.

For times when top-down motoring just won't do, the R8 Spyder has a power-operated soft-top that Audi claims can open or close in a swift 19 seconds. You don't have to be completely stationary for the top to work, either, as it's functional up to about 30 mph. Back to top


Latest 2012 R8 Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(5.0)
Performance
(4.9)
Interior Design
(4.8)
Comfort
(4.6)
Reliability
(4.7)
Value For The Money
(4.6)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

Love my R8!

by Jvr427 from Huntington, NY 11743 on October 16, 2018

This car met and exceeded my expectations for styling, comfort, and performance. I sold my 2007 Ferrari 430 coupe, 50th anniversary edition for the R8 and am not disappointed. Performance is about the ... Read full review

(5.0)

Great car

by Juan from Wethersdfield from Wethersfield ct on October 2, 2018

The most luxurious car nice car to drive anytime you be the lookout from everyone Drives like super car that it is Enjoy 100 excellent Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2012 Audi R8 currently has 1 recall

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2012 Audi R8 has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranties

Backed by Audi
New Car Program Benefits
  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    48 months / unlimited distance

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits
  • Maximum Age/Mileage

    5 model years or newer/less than 60,000 miles

  • Basic Warranty Terms

    1 year/unlimited miles after expiration of new vehicle limited warranty or from date of sale if the new vehicle limited warranty has expired

  • Powertrain warranty

    N/A

  • Dealer Certification Required

    300-plus-point inspection

  • Roadside Assistance

    Yes

  • View All Program Details

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The R8 received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker