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Report: Audi canceling A8 W12 and S8 sedan for MY2010

 

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The plan to can the V6, W12 and sporty large sedan is targeted at cost and modernization

The plan to can the V6, W12 and sporty large sedan is targeted at cost and modernization

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Improvement means change and sometimes change means leaving behind old favorites to focus on new. That's the case for Audi according to the latest reports, which say the A8 W12 and S8 sedans are done as of the 2009 model year, as is the VR6 V6 engine.

The decision to get rid of the VR6 is an easy one, according to Edmunds: it is old technology, using a narrow V-angle and lacking direct injection. Switching over cars that used it to the 3.2L V6 found in other Audis will be no problem.

But dropping the relatively rare and certainly over-the-top A8 W12 is a blow to lovers of simple excess and quirky technology alike. So too the death of the V10-powered S8. Though the Lamborghini-sourced mill will continue to power the S6 and the R8 V10, the sport big sedan slot in Audi's lineup will be vacant starting from the 2010 model year.

Small volume sales and large expenses related to the complex engines make the business decision easy, but that doesn't make it a bitter pill for enthusiasts. On the other hand, compared to competitors BMW and Mercedes Benz, the lack of a big and bad uber-sedan puts Audi at a competitive disadvantage - think S63 AMG and BMW 760i - and perhaps reflects new corporate cousin Porsche's desire to have a little more breathing room for its Panamera.

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Comments (4)
  1. This is an excerpt on this which I had posted on another blog pertaining to the Audi A8:

    "I figure that the current A8 is at the end of it's life-cycle and a new-generation/successor is on-deck, and the article indicates that the S8's disappearance could only be temporary for, again, a new generation A8 will soon be with us. Now, does this mean the upper-end A8s, or the S8 will have possibly Lamborghini-sourced V10s and the W12 edition will be gone? Or, will a range-topper A8 now sport a V12, or will it be offered with the V10? A Lambo-sourced V10 is a damn-good thing, nonetheless!!! It appears that the Bentley Continental range will continue with the W12"
     
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  2. "Switching over cars that used it (VR6) to the 3.2L V6 found in other Audis will be no problem."

    Tell that to the A3/TT Design Teams. Won't fit. Thus the new 265 hp 2.0T and 360 hp 2.5T that will.
     
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  3. The VR6 is now an older engine, and it can't support re-engineering to newer technologies such as DIrect-Injection, to it'll be succeeded. This is what I'm to understand.

    The current Audi A8, though facelifted last year, is at the end of it's lifecycle, this generation is a lame-duck. A new one is on deck, and I'm hoping a top-tier performance edition is in the cards for that. The proportions should be much nicer and elegant in the next-generation, taking into account the 4 & 5, by lengthing and moving the front wheels forward and lesser front overhang.
     
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  4. "Switching over cars that used it (VR6) to the 3.2L V6 found in other Audis will be no problem."
    Tell that to the A3/TT Design Teams. Won't fit. Thus the new 265 hp 2.0T and 360 hp 2.5T that will.
    The article talks about the A8. Its engine compartment is clearly big enough for a 3.2L engine.

    Micheal D has a point. We will have a new A8 in under 18 months.
     
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