The Audi A8 is an extremely expansive car with many variations and options. The years in production range from 1994 to the present, and there have been three generations of design. The interesting thing about Audi is that it competes with BMW and Mercedes across and array of classes and styles; the Audi A8 seems to be aimed to compete against Mercedes’s more luxurious classes, and it does a fine job at that.
There are so many variations of this car that its hard to sum up what its about, but the third and current generation seems to be more about tech and luxury with an extremely impressive engine. The third gen started in 2009, and now has progressed into such models as the A8 hybrid, which delivers exactly what it promises. Or even more impressive and prestigious is the Audi A8 W12, which has a ridiculously low production count at only 50 units; with leather by Poltrona Frau, it became a favorite at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor show. The S8 4.0 TFSI quattro is a very interesting variant in that it shares the same engine as the Bentley GT, this car was also shown at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 2001 and went on sale in 2012, and in 2013 in Taiwan. In 2014 the third generation Audi A8 got a facelift with a Multi Media Interface, which has broadband internet capabilities. It now has Cornering lights, a night vision assistant, head-up display, electromechanical power steering, active lane assist, park assist, side assist, active noise cancellation, additional noise damping, and many other changes.
The car is truly for someone who wants something relatively low-key yet at the sometime wanting power from the engine, and luxury with immense tech.
The Prodrive P2 is a extremely interesting prototype created by Prodrive, Banbury, Warwick. The car is based on the Subaru R1 kei and a very well known engine – the Subaru Impreza WRX STI – coupled with many systems which Prodrive designed for their World Championship racing programmers, which have been proven to be extremely impressive. The design of the car was done by Peter Stevens who is famous for designing the McLaren F1 car. The car features a rally like anti lag system which prevents turbo lag as well as an active center and active rear differential with maximum grip performance. The rear differential uses an advanced computer system to shift torque wherever it is needed, making the maneuvering absolutely amazing. The system uses spin-slip sensor readings, which is very common in rally cars, but almost never seen on road cars. One car has been fully completed and was featured on Top-Gear, where one of the hosts tested this deferential system by driving the car around a circle; the car kept closing the circle at extremely high speeds for such a maneuver, resulting in the host, Jeremy Clarkson, having to stop the car, open the door and vomiting all over the road. The car obtained a 0-60 speed in 3.8 seconds and a top speed of 174 with only 345 bhp. Which is extremely impressive for a car designed from rally tech. On the Top-Gear track, the car received a time o 1:24:3, beating out the Audi R8, the BMW M5, The Aston Marin Vanquish, and the TVR Sagaris. Prodrive has no plans to put this car into production. Regardless, the Prodrive P2 is one of the most impressive cars produced in the last 20 years, and we’ve started to see the tech ideas being put into other car systems by more known automakers.
The Ferrari F430 is the successor to the Ferrari 360, and the predecessor to the 458, which makes it an extremely interested bridge car. You can definitely see the F430 influence in the 458 design. It debuted at the 2004 Paris Motor Show and its production lasted until the 28th of July 2009. This car could have been probably produced for another 3-4 years by Ferrari, but the 458 design was so stellar that they was almost no point in not discontinuing the production of the F430 and dropping the 458 into production.
The F430 had and excellent design, they started with the Ferrari 360 design and made the car more aerodynamic and with much more down force. Although somehow the drag coefficient remained the same. Enzo tail lights were used. The car totes a 4.3L v8 Ferrari-Maserati F136 family engine. This engine architecture is the replacement for the Dino project which spanned decades, and the F430 is the first Ferrari to employ and engine from the new project. The brakes are an interesting collaboration between Brembo, Basch, and Ferrari, resulting in something excellent.
There were six non-racing variants of the car. Of course there’s the F430 spider. Then there is the F430 challenge which is more of a track version. Then there’s the 430 Scuderia with is and interesting model in which its the closest design to what was going to become – the 458. And of course there’s a spider variant called the Suderia Spider 16M. The two lesser known variants of the car are the F430 Spider Bio Fuel, and the SP1 which there is only one of.
There were many racing variants of this car, each one with very impressive stats.
This car is an extremely important part of Ferrari’s history. By know everyone should know the 458 and how much of an impressive machine it is, but the F430 made the 458 very possible by having new ideas in both engine and styling being tried out on it. The result was excellent, and thanks to this car much more became possible, unlike some models where things were discarded the car was lost in history to its other overshadowing brothers, this car should be seen with the same respect the 458 is; only because it is what made the 458 possible.