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LA show: Audi unveils R8 swansong for US

Out she goes: The Audi R8 Competition is coming, but sadly, only for the United States market.

Audi’s R8 set to bow out with 419kW Competition ahead of all-new model in 2015

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Audi logo30 Oct 2014

By RON HAMMERTON

AUDI is preparing to send its first-generation R8 sports flagship out with a last hurrah, launching the limited-edition Competition coupe at November’s Los Angeles motor show.

Just 60 of the special coupes will be built, all of them destined for the United States market.

Inspired by the race-ready R8 LMS, the R8 Competition uses the same 419kW/540Nm 5.2-litre V10 as the previous R8 limited edition for Europe, the LMX, that was launched in Europe just a few months ago.

This is 15kW more than the ‘standard’ 404kW V10 R8 FSI Quattro sold in Australia, but the same torque. It also shares the same all-wheel-drive Quattro system and seven-speed S-tronic automatic transmission as all other road-ready R8s.

The Competition is said to be capable of a 3.3-second blast from zero to 100km/h – about 0.2 seconds faster than the stock model – and on to a 320km/h top speed.

Among the Competition’s points of difference are race-car style carbon-fibre fittings such as the fixed rear wing and front splitter.

Carbon ceramic brakes are standard, along with black-finished alloy wheels. The door sills have an illuminated R8 Competition logo.

Born in 2006, the first-generation R8’s production run is expected to finish in the first half of 2015 ahead of the all-new model from about the middle of the year, in Europe at least. The coupe will come first, with the Spyder following in mid 2016.

The Australian R8 launch can be expected in the first half of 2016.

According to European reports, the second-gen R8 range will be expanded to include full-electric e-Tron and plug-in hybrid powertrains, alongside the familiar V8 and V10 engines.

The plug-in hybrid powertrain is likely to be shared with the Lamborghini Asterion. The current R8 shares its V10 with Lamborghini.

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GoAutoNews is Australia’s number one automotive industry journal covering the latest news, future and new model releases, market trends, industry personnel movements, and international events.