Freedom: the dimensional concept
5,172 millimeters (203.6 in) long, 1,945 millimeters (76.6 in) wide and 1,473 millimeters (58.0 in) high – these are the dimensions of the new A8. It is 37 mm (1.5 in) longer and 13 mm (0.5 in) higher than its predecessor model, but the width is marginally lower. The wheelbase is 2,998 millimeters (118.0 in) (+6 millimeters / +0.2 in). In the long-wheelbase version, this dimension and the overall length gain 130 millimeters (5.1 in), while the height puts on 15 millimeters (0.6 in). On both body versions the track width is 1,644/1,633 millimeters (64.7/63.3 in) (front/rear).
The passengers benefit from the increased dimensions – the new A8 has the biggest interior in its class. On both body versions it has grown in length by 32 millimeters (1.3 in). On the A8 L, there is also more headroom, shoulder room and leg room. The two-section panoramic sunroof gives its interior a more open effect. The luggage compartment has a capacity of 505 liters (17.8 cu ft) on both the A8 and the A8 L.
Expertise in lightweight construction: multimaterial Audi Space Frame
Aluminum, steel, magnesium and carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP): The new A8 uses more materials in its supporting body structure than in any previous Audi production model. The luxury sedan’s torsional rigidity, the critical parameter for precise handling and pleasing acoustics, represents an improvement of up to 24 percent on the predecessor model.
Audi is a pioneer of lightweight automotive construction: The original A8 from 1994 was the first volume-built automobile in the world to have a unitary aluminum body, the Audi Space Frame (ASF). Since then, the brand has built over one million cars using that technology. The body of the new A8 likewise adopts the ASF principle. It is made 58 percent from aluminum components – the classic structure of cast nodes, extruded sections and panels. Their strength has been considerably increased compared with the previous model. The cabin consists of hot-formed steel components, complemented by an ultra-high-strength, torsionally extremely rigid rear panel of CFRP. To absorb the loads and shear forces optimally, the fabric layers in the latter run in different directions, as many as 19 of them criss-crossing. A magnesium strut-tower bar completes the lightweight construction concept.
The new A8 leads its class with finesse in every area of aeroacoustics, too – especially the mirrors and door seals. In addition to sophisticated mounts for the axles and assemblies, the glazing plays a pivotal role here. The optional acoustic glass improves soundproofing still further.
Audi uses 14 different joining techniques to assemble the multimaterial body, including hemming for the door sills. This technology is used to join the aluminum side wall frame to the hot-formed steel sheets at the B-pillar, roof line and sills. It is the very basis for their use. It also results in very narrow flanges and in correspondingly large, convenient entries.
A short action: the electric door lock
Every operating process in the new A8 is easy – even opening the doors. The hand merely need pull the exterior handle through five millimeters (0.2 in) – a microswitch then releases the catch. A few millimeters is likewise all that is required to open a door from the inside. In an emergency, the doors can be opened mechanically from either inside or outside by pulling Bowden cables vigorously.
Audi can supply the electric door lock with the option of a power-latching feature. The luggage compartment cover automatically swings up as standard when released. An electric drive is available as an option. Opening and closing are triggered off here at the push of a button or by foot gesture – in combination with the convenience key.
Full sensory experience: the new luxury slant
Freedom is the defining design feature with a new luxury slant. The new A8 therefore appeals to all senses and blends impressions into a coherent composition. This starts with the very shapes and lines of the interior design, but also extends to the authentic materials of superlative bespoke quality, and culminates in the prepossessing audio experience of the high-end sound system and the subtle lingering impression of the fragrancing.
Indulgent comfort: the seats
The lounge character presented by the interior of the new A8 owes much to the newly designed seats. They are much lighter than on the previous model – the front seats alone trim over four kilograms (8.8 lb) off the weight. Glass fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) is used in the rear seats. At both the front and rear, the structure of the seat cushions and backrests with a variety of shaped, comfort and flexible foam layers afford excellent comfort and good lateral support.
Audi supplies the front seats in various different versions. The top version is the comfort customized contour seat. In addition to pneumatic seat and backrest side bolster adjustment, it also comes optionally with heating and ventilation, each with separate three-stage control. The developers have also significantly extended the optional massage function. In each backrest there are 16 small bubble-shaped air pockets, in threes on top of each other. They massage the entire back in a choice of seven programs and three intensity levels. A small compressor on each seat exerts up to 0.5 bar of pressure.
Both A8 body versions – standard and extended wheelbase alike – are built as standard with a three-person rear seat, optionally with through-loading facility or cool box. The outer seats can also be supplied optionally with heating, plus electrical adjustment of the fore/aft position, seat angle and backrest angle. The lumbar support is then pneumatically adjustable. It can likewise be supplied with a massage function with 18 triple air pockets per seat. Comfort head restraints and rear roller blinds add the finishing touches to a sense of relaxed travel. Audi also supplies the same adjustment options as for the three-person rear seat bench for the individual seats in the A8 L with long, continuous center console. It provides an armrest and large storage compartments.
First-class travel: the relaxation seat
The first-class solution in the new A8 is the relaxation seat at the rear right. Its occupant can recline it and rest their feet on an electrically folding surface on the backrest of the special front passenger seat. This provides the option of having the feet warmed and massaged with multiple settings. There are three power levels, two programs and three foot sizes to choose from, also providing full-surface reflexology. The rear passengers can relax their heads against the soft comfort head restraints, which here have electric height adjustment. The relaxation seat package comprises the comfort customized contour seats with ventilation and massage, the long center console with double folding table, the rear seat remote operating unit, Rear Seat Entertainment and four-zone deluxe automatic air conditioning. The thermal comfort packages, a supplementary option, heat the armrests in the doors, the front and rear center armrests, as well as the steering wheel.
Compact-format operating convenience: the rear seat remote
Audi has created the compact rear seat remote especially for the rear compartment. This device resembling a smartphone allows the passengers to operate an array of climate control, seat, lighting, adjustment and media functions via its touchscreen. The device also acts as a convenient remote control for the Audi tablet if the latter is fixed to the reverse of the front seat. Communication with the MMI navigation plus is by Wi-Fi on the new 5 GHz band.
The rear seat remote has a 5.7-inch touchscreen display in OLED technology with full HD resolution. Its aluminum case is very high-quality, and the technology with the T40 processor from NVIDIA is made to withstand the very high temperatures that may be encountered inside the car. The rear seat remote clips into and is charged in the center console on the four-seater A8 and the center armrest in the five-seater. Depending on the rear equipment specification, it is supplied as standard or an option.
The two Audi tablets of the Rear Seat Entertainment are equally exclusive and sturdy. Their 10.1-inch screens have a full HD resolution and the processor is by NVIDIA. The Audi tablets communicate with the MMI navigation plus and the rear seat remote by Wi-Fi. Their users can enter navigation destinations, select media or surf over a Wi-Fi hotspot. The Audi tablets also provide access to the world of Android, complete with the Google Play Store. After a journey, they can continue to be used away from the car on any Wi-Fi network.
As you choose: new phone solutions
It also could not be more convenient to handle phone calls in the new A8. The sedan allows two mobile phones to be connected and used alternately. The MMI navigation plus can save over 4,000 contacts. For the rear, a separate Audi phone box is available for the four and five-seater versions alike. It pairs the passenger’s smartphone wirelessly with the car aerial for guaranteed best reception. It also charges it inductively using the Qi standard. In conjunction with the rear seat remote operating unit, the rear passenger can in addition make phone calls discreetly.
High-resolution 3D sound: the top sound system from Bang & Olufsen
Audi has three sound system offerings. Topping the bill is the 3D Bang & Olufsen Advanced Sound System, now also available for the first time in the rear. An efficient amplifier controls 23 loudspeakers with 1,920 watts; their neodymium magnets produce an airy, high-resolution sound pattern. Precision-perforated aluminum elements adorn the bezels of the door loudspeakers, while LED light guides emit white light. The lens tweeters in the instrument panel are extended electrically – a modern classic feature of Audi.
Four full-range loudspeakers in the A-pillars and in the roof line take care of the high-level spatial dimension. An algorithm computes the signals for them. It is based on a method that Audi has developed jointly with the Fraunhofer Institute. The sound impression makes the interior a world of acoustic experience where the music unfolds exactly how it was recorded in the concert hall.
As an option Audi equips the new A8 with a digital audio tuner for DAB and DAB+. The optional TV tuner equally operates digitally. Its CI+ module permits reception of encrypted channels via a smartcard.
Clean, fresh air on board: the air quality package
The new A8 offers its passengers a thoroughly agreeable climate including when it comes to air – especially with the optional air quality package. This includes fragrancing distributed non-centrally throughout the interior using the air conditioning system’s outlets. The instrument panel conceals two vials containing a hint of sea breeze or mountain air. The customer can adjust the level of intensity of the fragrancing over four stages. The ionizer is also part of the package. It charges the molecules of the interior air electrically with negative ions. These anions attract dust and similar minuscule particles; these then form mini clusters which fall to the floor so are not inhaled.
Next year, a particulate measuring sensor will also be introduced for specific markets. It determines the level of particulates in the ambient air and compares this reading with the air inside the A8. Filter efficiency is displayed on the on-board monitor – an important service especially for customers in urban areas.
The standard air quality sensor also detects harmful gases and activates recirculated air mode as necessary. The filter in the four-zone automatic air conditioning eliminates the bulk of these gases and particulates, and also neutralizes many allergens.
The equipment, data and prices specified in this document refer to the model range offered in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted.