To be sold in limited numbers from June, the new range-topping Audi model is described as the first production car to feature laser headlight technology as standard equipment.
The new laser headlights, which operate at speeds above 37mph, supplement the R8 LMX’s LED high-beam projectors, providing a phosphor-converted white light with a colour temperature of 5500 Kelvin.
The launch of the new car is an affront to rival BMW, which offers similar laser headlight technology on its new i8, albeit as an option.
Audi first hinted at the introduction of laser light technology on its road cars when it introduced it on its R18 e-tron race car. “The transfer of the laser headlight to the Audi R8 LMX underscores our leading position in lighting technology,” said Audi development boss Ulrich Hackenberg.
In 2008, the R8 became the first production car to feature LED headlights. This was followed up in 2012 by the introduction of dynamic indicators on the mid-engined Audi.
At the heart of the limited-edition R8 V10 is a powered-up version of Audi’s naturally aspirated 5.2-litre V10 petrol engine. With 562bhp, it develops 20bhp more than the standard R8 V10.
Power is sent to all four wheels through a standard seven-speed S-tronic dual-clutch automatic gearbox.
Audi claims 0-62mph acceleration in 3.4sec and a 198mph top speed – 0.1sec and 1mph faster than the standard R8 V10. Claimed combined fuel consumption and average CO2 emissions remain the same at 21.9mpg and 299g/km respectively.