Talk of a diesel-powered R8 has been around since the launch of the Audi supercar and really peaked in 2008 when not one but two R8 concept cars powered by diesel engines were presented, each fitted with a monster 6.0-liter V-12 TDI good for 500 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. Audi eventually abandoned plans for its diesel R8, but now it looks like the car is back on the agenda.
Automobile Magazine is reporting that the second generation of the R8, due for the 2016 model year, will eventually get a diesel option. At launch the new R8 will offer V-8 and V-10 units, just like the current model, but for 2017 a new diesel option will reportedly be offered.
The diesel engine destined for the R8 is said to be either Audi’s 4.0-liter TDI turbodiesel V-8 currently offered overseas, or a new 5.0-liter TDI V-10 that is reportedly being developed for use in future Bentley vehicles.
Audi has multiple successes with its TDI technology at the 2014 Hours of Le Mans, so it’s understandable the automaker will want to show off that technology in its flagship. VW Group chairman Ferdinand Piëch is also said to be keen to see a diesel R8 launched.
While Audi is yet to confirm that it is bringing a diesel R8 to market, the brand with the four rings has said the new R8 will have an all-electric R8 e-tron model. There’s also talk of a smaller capacity turbocharged engine being offered in markets where tax regulations disfavor car’s with large capacity engines.
Stay tuned for an update.