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The Audi R8 GT RWD: A Veritable Swan Song for the Mighty Ten-Cylinder That Won Our Hearts

Believe it or not, twelve years have passed since the launch of the first generation Audi R8 GT, a limited-edition variant of the popular two-seater sportscar that now has its own special place in petrolhead's hearts around the world. Although holding the same "GT" inscription, for next year, Audi developed an even more exclusive flavor of the current R8, one that might become the brand's most exclusive and desirable sportscar yet.
Audi R8 GT RWD 15 photos
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Recently, Audi Sport launched the second edition of the R8 GT, boasting an even more powerful engine, unique exterior styling, and an updated drivetrain. Most importantly, it ditched the Quattro all-wheel-drive system in favor of a rear-wheel drive setup coupled with a state-of-the-art traction control system.

Sadly, the arrival of this special edition is not all roses, as Audi announced that the new R8 GT is the one that says goodbye to the remarkable V10 engine that has been such an integral part of the R8's legacy throughout the years. As the guys from Ingolstadt took the decision to retire the normally-aspirated 5.2-liter FSI unit, they made one last celebration for this truly iconic powerplant.

For 2023, the Audi R8 GT RWD will be the brand's most powerful variant to date, meaning they managed to squeeze an impressive 602 hp and 413 lb-ft (560 Nm) of torque from the mighty ten-cylinder. It comes mated to an updated 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox which is set to provide even faster shifts and improved response times and overall performance. Additionally, the redesigned transmission setup enables even more spectacular acceleration times in all circumstances due to modified gear ratios.

Audi R8 GT RWD
The claimed performance figures are indeed impressive, considering its rear-wheel drive character. From a standstill, the new R8 GT can accelerate to 62 mph (100 kph) in just 3.4 seconds, four-tenths of a second ahead of the standard RWD model, and on par with the Quattro-equipped variants. Moreover, 0 to 124 mph (200 kph) can be achieved in 10.1 seconds, and it can keep on going until reaching its limited top speed of 199 mph (320 kph).

Compared to its sibling, the R8 V10 Performance RWD, the 2023 R8 GT achieved a 44-lb (20 kg) weight reduction, tipping the scale at only 3,461 lbs (1,570 kg). The various measures that helped slim down this already dynamically honed-in supercar include a set of exclusive 20-inch, 10-spoke forged alloy wheels inspired by Audi's race cars, which come paired with high-performance Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires.

Extra weight is shredded thanks to the R8 GT's standard fit and enormously dependable ceramic braking system. Additionally, the R8 GT equips a pair of high-performance bucket seats, a carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) anti-roll bar, and a reworked performance sports suspension, with an R8 GT coilover alternative setup, available as an option. Not least, the two coupling red anodized aluminum rod connections together with the CFRP anti-roll bar markedly improve the vehicle's road manners and cornering dynamics.

Audi R8 GT RWD
Audi developed a unique and highly-adjustable rear torque and traction control system to help the R8 GT cope with so much power delivered to the rear wheels. The system talks closely to the electronic stability control algorithms and achieves precise slippage mitigation on the back axle.

It offers seven distinctive curves, each offering a distinct grade of support, ranging from Level 1, which only permits very little slippage, to Level 7, which allows for significant degrees of side movement. The desired rear torque level can be adjusted using a control dial placed on the steering wheel for easy access and rapid adaptation to any road surfaces and conditions the driver might experience at one given moment.

The exterior of the new R8 V10 GT RWD is kitted out with unique add-on components to set it apart from its counterparts from Audi's lineup. These include the black badges and inscriptions, a wind tunnel-developed carbon aero kit in high gloss, improving road stability and enabling faster cornering speeds. It is comprised of a unique front splitter, side skirts, rear scoops, a diffuser, and a high gooseneck rear wing. The blacked-out theme continues inside the rear hatch also, as the V10 engine accents and even the intake manifolds are all darkened.

Audi R8 GT RWD
The interior layout of the 2023 R8 GT is reminiscent of the first-generation model, highlighting a black and red color scheme that even includes red seatbelts, an option only available on the GT from 12 years ago. Furthermore, the special model lettering is written in black and red on the floor mats and on the bucket seats. As a side note, slightly matted in the carbon inlay, in the center of the gear selection lever, sits the sequential numbering of each R8 GT model.

A veritable swan song for the German manufacturer and the supercar industry as well, the Audi R8 GT RWD, will be available in dealerships from 2023, carrying a starting price of € 225,000 ($249,900). Interested buyers should act quickly, as only 333 units of this special edition will ever be produced worldwide.

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