2012 Audi R8 GT: The Collector's Supercar

If you have $200,000 jingling around in your pockets, we suggest you buy the upcoming Audi R8 GT.

It will be not only fun, but also a pretty good investment. The newest version of the stellar Audi R8 delivers stupefying performance: Top speed is said to be just a hair less than 200 miles per hour. But the fact that Audi is only going to build 333 of them virtually guarantees that the car will be a collector's item.

Audi is actually counting on that.

The R8 GT will be the first limited-production sports car produced by the marque, and only 90 of the 333 units are destined for the U.S. To demonstrate clearly what a special car it is, each R8 GT will have its production number displayed on the gear shift.

When it comes to exceptional performance characteristics, let's first examine the engine.

Audi has taken its 5.2 liter V10 and boosted output to 560 horsepower and 398 pound-feet of torque, which propels the vehicle from 0 to 60 mph in 3.6 seconds. Audi claims a top speed of 198.84 mph, but this isn't a car aimed at the Bonneville Salt Flats. The R8 GT's combination of quattro permanent all-wheel drive and performance-tuned suspension ensure that the car's handling is as great as its looks. The R tronic sequential gearbox with paddle shifters provides responsive gear changes for those who like to pick gears themselves.

While Audi engineers were putting more horsepower in, they were also taking more weight out.

The lightweight carbon-fiber front bumper features aerodynamic flics at the front corners, increasing downforce on the front axle, while the stationary carbon-fiber rear wing and diffuser increase downforce on the rear axle and shave 11.5 pounds off the production version R8 V10. Carbon fiber elements are used strategically throughout the body to reduce weight further, so the R8 GT is approximately 180 pounds lighter than the R8 V10. While designed for performance, the R8 GT interior also exudes refinement: It offers Audi MMI navigation, automatic air-conditioning, and a premium sound system -- all at a starting price of $196,800.



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Driving Today Auto Review - 2012 Audi R8 GT: The Collector's Supercar