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Saturday, April 24, 2010

2011 Audi A8 L arrives with 500-hp W12, seating for a king-maker

Audi has released details of the newAudi A8 L W12 quattro, the long wheelbase version of the A8 top end sedan. The two main differences from other models are its length and the W12 FSI engine.

The car’s overall length is 5,267 millimeters (17.28 ft), 130mm (5.1 in) longer than other models. It features a longer wheelbase and an increase in height of 3,122 mm (10.24 ft) and 2 mm (0.08 in) respectively.

Rear seat passengers are treated to several luxuries, including the two optional separate power-adjustable seats which can be heated and ventilated, a full-length centre console that can be equipped with things like a folding table and a fridge, as well as four-zone automatic air conditioning.2011 Audi A8 L

The standard four-zone automatic climate control is manipulated by no less than 25 adjustable motors, and the massive center tunnel contains everything from a folding table to a refrigerator. It’s all first-class, from the ambient lighting to the Valonea leather, and when the time comes to put the laptop away, crank up the 1,400-watt, 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound System and enjoy a movie on one of the two 10.2-inch LCD displays.

If you’re ready to give your chauffeur a rest, take solace in the fact that the W12 puts out 500 horsepower and 461 pound-feet of torque through Audi’s new eight-speed automatic transmission and Quattro all-wheel drive. The result is a remarkably quick 4.9-second run to 60 and a electrically-limited top speed of 155 mph.

The W12 will be the standard engine at launch, with a few diesel and petrol-powered engines available further down the line.

Audi is pulling out its biggest gun yet for the Beijing Motor Show, and while the big news for the Audi A8 L might be the 6.3-liter W12 and the sedan’s longer wheelbase, it’s the rear seat accommodations that have us frothing at the mouth.

Seriously, just look at it.

With an overall length of nearly 17 and a half feet, the Audi A8 L is almost a half-foot longer than its standard sibling, with a wheelbase of 10.24 feet. Those extra inches are put to good effect, with an interior that’s enough to make a Maybach look downright spartan.

Open the lengthened rear doors and occupants are greeted by acres of leather, a full-length center console and two power-adjustable, heated and ventilated seats that not only move fore and aft, but include adjustments for cushion depth, lumbar support and seat back angle. Ten remote-controlled air-bladders massage your cares away, and if the front passenger seat – with its power-adjustable folding ottoman – cramps your style, you can move it forward with the flick of a switch.

Other interior luxuries, standard and optional, include the MMI system, 3D satellite navigation with Google Earth, a 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound System, a panoramic sunroof and tanned Valonea leather.

The exterior features such details as a single-frame radiator grille with chromed horizontal bars, W12 badges and two trapezoidal tailpipes. Four 15-spoke 19-inch alloy wheels with 255/45 tyres are fitted as standard, but customers can also order optional 20-inch or even 21-inch rims.

Based on the 6.0-liter engine found in the previous generation A8, the new W12 has been fully revised with increased displacement (now 6.3-liters) and added petrol direct injection. It weighs 247 kilograms (545 lbs) and has a power output of 368 kW (493 bhp / 500 PS) plus torque of 625 Nm (460.98 lb-ft) at 3,250rpm. Running all four wheels is an 8-speed Tiptronic that helps the A8 L get from 0 - 100km/h in 4.9 seconds, reaching a top speed of 250km/h. Average fuel consumption is said to be a low 12.0 litres per 100 kilometres (19.6 US mpg).

While only the W12 FSI is available at launch, by the end of the year the car will be offered with all the engines currently in the A8 range.

2011 Audi A8 L 2011 Audi A8 L 2011 Audi A8 L 2011 Audi A8 L 2011 Audi A8 L 2011 Audi A8 L

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