Audi R8 V10 Buyers Guide

Audi R8 V10 Buyers Guide

The R8 is best described as a piece of automotive art. It’s the type of car that invites you to stare at it endlessly, even when just parked in your garage or driveway. It’s a uniquely German take on a mid-engine supercar, but without a doubt it draws on classic Italian styling cues and proportions. It’s low, wide and elegant looking. The cab forward design immediately lets you know that there’s a hulking engine resting behind the car’s two seats – and if in doubt, the glass engine bay cover lets you fully admire the high-revving, naturally aspirated V10. Peering into the engine bay, the meticulous carbon fibre work helps dress-up the engine, while small LEDs help illuminate it like a Picasso at a museum.

Walking up to the R8, the light reflects off of the car’s curves, while your eye is also immediately drawn to the unique R8 styling elements – such as its now-iconic “side blades,” where the carbon fibre weave shimmers. Opening up the driver’s door, the illuminated doorsills light up, reminding you that you’re about to step into a special car – an R8. Stepping inside, the senses are greeted by a myriad of pleasures – including soft leather surfaces, shining carbon fibre, chunky metal shifter, supple seating surfaces, and the smell of fine leather. The cockpit’s canopy of carbon fibre literally wraps the driver, while the highly sloped centre console angles towards the driver – letting you know this car is all about being in the driver’s seat.

Starting up the R8 is a unique pleasure in-and-of itself. In an age of push-button start ignitions, you immediately notice that the R8’s dash is devoid of any such button. Instead, you’ve got an actual key that needs to be inserted in the steering column. Turning the key to the first position turns on the car’s electronics and accessories. The R8’s dash lights up, and the dials sweep left to right and back again, drawing your eye to the car’s 200mph+ speedometer and tachometer calling out the V10’s screaming 8,750 RPM redline. As the volt-meter reaches full power, the engine is ready to turn over. Turning the key to the second position fires up the 5.2 litre V10, which greets the driver with a quick bark from the exhaust before it settles into an idle burble. An engine whine behind your head reminds you that there’s a hefty V10 behind the firewall waiting to rocket the R8 to your destination.

If you’ve never been behind the wheel of a mid-engine supercar, you immediately notice that the R8 isn’t your typical sedan or sports coupe. Visibility is fantastic through the front windshield and side windows, but like many mid-engine supercars, visibility out of the back and rear quarters is limited – although not nearly as much as many others in its class.

Why Buy an Audi R8 V10?

  • The first Audi supercar.
  • Mid engine four wheel drive setup proved to be a very effective combination on the road and track.
  • Unique styling is still breathtaking and has aged extremely well.
  • Very reliable mechanicals.
  • All aluminium construction.
  • The look of the car has not been changed dramatically since first launch.
  • Relatively low numbers of used cars for sale and prices have been static for some time.

Buying one

Prices for the R8 V10 start at around £55,000 and go up to £100,000 for the late build S-Tronic cars with all the options. Our advice is to buy an R8 in your desired with a fully documented Audi service history. If your ideal specification isn’t available, wait until it is.

Maintenance & Parts

The prices of most parts on the R8 are expensive and the fitting prices in addition to this at Audi dealerships will also be significant. However the R8 is seen as a supercar with performance to match this, so make sure you thoroughly inspect any car you are looking to buy, ideally with a professional. 

Areas where replacement costs are high include the clutch, suspension dampers, brake discs, exhaust, wheels, alternator, starter motor and lights. Our advice is to pay for a thorough inspection before purchase.

Buyer Checkpoints


There are no major issues with the V10 unit which is based on the Lamborghini Gallardo engine. High mileage and track used engines have no reported problems. Look out for excessive smoke on start up and hard acceleration.

Clutch & Gearbox

Just like the engine, the clutch and gearbox in both manual and automated manual are durable items. Lots of town driving in the R-Tronic and S-Tronic versions will reduce clutch life.

Suspension & Steering

The MagneRide suspension will have a great cost associated with replacing dampers so check for unusual ride and handling on a test drive and listen out for any noises from any corner of the car. The dampers do tend to leak so get them thoroughly checked out before purchase. There are no problems reported from the steering components.


The carbon ceramic discs should last the lifetime of the car and so far no owners have reported otherwise. However track use can lead to excessive wear.

Wheels & Tyres

The large width of tyres make them expensive to replace. Check for any pothole and kerb damage to the wheels.


The underside of the R8 is fitted with several underbody trays and it is recommended that you get any car you are interested in buying inspected, including removal of these trays to see if there are any signs of crash damage or fluid leaks being masked.


There are three levels of servicing with the most comprehensive costing around £650 from a specialist dealer. A basic service will cost around £300.

Audi R8 Evolution

2007 – R8 Coupe 4.2 FSI Quattro released, the V8 powerplant is based on the Audi RS4 but with dry sump lubrication and some other enhancements to suit the R8.

2009 – R8 Coupe 5.2 FSI Quattro released, fitted with a V10 based on the Lamborghini LP560-4 unit. The car featured larger wheels and brakes as well as LED headlights.

2010 – R8 Spyder version of the 5.2 litre V10 was released, the first convertible version of the R8.

2011 – R8 Spyder 4.2 FSI Quattro released following the success of the V10 Spyder. V8 Limited Edition R8 of 100 cars was sold in the UK to commemorate the 10th Audi 24 hour Le Mans victory. It featured styling changes including red brake calipers and carbon interior details.

2012 – R8 GT Coupe released as a limited edition model of 333 worldwide. This car featured an uprated V10 engine and 100kg weight saving over the standard V10. It also had updated body styling, a fixed carbon fibre rear wing and red brake calipers. A Spyder version was also made available, also limited to 333 cars.

What the motoring press said about the Audi R8

“ The limits of the R8 V-10 are extremely high. The ESP stability-control system has very little work to do even when you corner at insane speeds. The steering is precise and direct but not exceedingly aggressive. This car will stay neutral for a long time, and when it finally breaks loose, it doesn’t bite like other mid- or rear-engined sports cars. Just don’t stomp on the throttle clumsily.”
Car & Driver, 2010

“ My fear was that the extra power could upset the balance. Not so. It simply gives the R8’s sublime chassis the extra power it can so easily exploit. But the engine deserves special praise. The new 5.2 V10 is so smooth and refined, with an effortless surge of elastic acceleration from way down low. Wind it towards the 8000rpm redline, however, and the soundtrack takes on a highly addictive hard-edged wail.”
CAR, 2009

“ High-performance mid-engined cars are apt to give the driver the impression he’s been strapped to the nose cone of a huge rocket devised by a mad genius. These cars have a lively reputation for throwing themselves backwards off the road. In that respect the R8 telegraphs its intentions and handles unexpected braking moments better than most.”
Telegraph, 2009



cylinders / capacity

10 / 5204

Carbon Emissions

CO2g / km



bhp / rpm

518 / 8000

Miles Per Gallon



lb ft / rpm

391 / 6500

Wheel & Tyres

Width / Sidewall / Diameter

235 / 35 / 19

295 / 30 / 19

Max Speed



Weight Distribution

Front : Rear

44 : 56

0 – 60mph



Track width

Front / Rear

1638 / 1595

0 – 100mph









6 speed manual

6 speed automatic

Power to Weight




Engine position / Driven wheels

Mid / All


Length / Width / Height

4435 / 1930 / 1252

Price New



Years Produced

2009 – 2015

Number Produced



Location & Who We Are

We are a Porsche Specialist based in rural Hertfordshire. We are located in a small village called Codicote, which is close to Knebworth, Welwyn Garden City & Stevenage. Our closest train station is Stevenage, we would happily pick you up from there to view a car. We are close to the A1M, M1 and M11 motorways. Our closest airports are Stansted and Luton if you are flying to come and view one of our cars. M R Sportscars is a trading name of Revival Sports Cars Limited, a company registered in England and Wales, registered number: 07624585 | VAT number: 264 5239 94 With regards to finance, we are a credit broker and not a lender. If requested, we can introduce you to a number of credit providers who may be able to offer you finance for your vehicle. Revival Sports Cars Limited (trading as M R Sportscars) are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

01438 412875

Codicote, Hertfordshire

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