The legend comes to an end: why Audi R8 is officially discontinued.

March 25th, after the TT model was discontinued last November, another iconic Audi model, the R8, also exited the historical stage. Recently, the last R8 was officially rolled off the assembly line at the Bollinger Hofen factory in Heilbronn, Germany. This farewell work is the Performance Quattro version, with a Las Vegas yellow body paint, combined with a carbon fiber exterior kit and 20-inch wheels.

Previously, after Audi announced the discontinuation of the R8, in order to meet the influx of a large number of orders, it had to extend the production cycle of the model. The original plan was to stop production at the end of 2023, but it was finally postponed to this month. Last year, the sales of the R8 increased by 49% to 1,591 units. However, the R8 is still one of the lowest-selling models in the Audi global lineup.

The sales of the R8 have always been at a relatively low level, which is closely related to its high price. In 2008, the sales of the R8 reached its peak, with a total of 5,016 units sold (including coupes and convertibles).

With the discontinuation of the R8, the highly renowned naturally aspirated V10 engine under the Volkswagen Group will also gradually fade out of the historical stage. Lamborghini will also discontinue the Huracan (Little Bull) later this year, which is the sister model of the R8. The remaining orders are already full, which means that super sports cars with a 5.2-liter naturally aspirated V10 engine will become a thing of the past. The Huracan has always been more popular than the R8, which also explains why only Lamborghini will introduce a successor model this year.

In June 2023, Lamborghini stated that the company’s financial situation is good enough to independently develop new models without sharing costs with Audi. The successor to the Huracan will be a pure Lamborghini-style model with a plug-in hybrid system and a small-displacement gasoline engine. It is reported that the engine will operate in a naturally aspirated mode below 7,000 rpm and then switch to a turbocharged mode.

Although Lamborghini is gearing up to launch a new generation of models, Audi has no plans to introduce a direct replacement model for the R8. Although senior Audi executives occasionally suggest that a pure electric alternative model may be launched, the possibility in the short term is not high. What is certain is that the high-revving V10 engine will permanently exit the historical stage with the discontinuation of the R8, not only due to the high price of the R8, but also closely related to the increasingly stringent emission regulations.

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