Butter and Muscles

“Butter and muscles” may be an unusual way to describe a car, but the Audi A8 is an unusual vehicle.

Perhaps the closest thing to a magic carpet ride that I’ve ever experienced.

It’s a big car…with so much room in the back seat that I’m not really sure you’d even hear the kids fighting back there.

It’s a refined car…with a ride that you’d be temped to call soft…but then when you call upon the suspension to show off, it’s like an Olympic athlete…a poised, confident and most capable performer.

And “GO!” is not an issue either.  Standard power in the A8 comes from a supercharged 3.0 liter V6…333 horsepower’s worth.  More than enough to take you to as many Super Speeder tickets as you can afford.    And with the engine being supercharged vs turbocharged,  there’s no lag at all when you activate your right foot.   It just goes.

All those 333 HP flow through an 8-speed automatic that’s so smooth that you can barely even feel it shifting.

Plus you get the traction and all-weather capability of Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive.

Quite a package.

Oh….and then there’s mileage.   Now, I know that gas mileage is usually not the #1 priority for someone looking at A8’s, 750’s or S-Classes.  But Audi really shines in the gas mileage department.    It’s rated at 17 city and 28 highway.   I got an average of 29 on a trip to the beach and back…pretty much following traffic at about 10 mph over the posted limits.      And 24 in town.

I’ve always wanted to fly on an executive jet.   Never have.   But I think that driving the A8 maybe came close. Fast…luxurious…and athletic.  If I had to drive to LA tomorrow, I’d be hard-pressed to think of a car I’d rather take.   And the A8 is such a pleasure to drive that I think I could make the trip in two days…and arrive smiling.

Audi has a stated mission to overtake BMW and Mercedes Benz in the next several years.   If they succeed, cars like the A8 will be one of the reasons they made it.

The 8 is the flagship of Audi’s lineup of sedans.   As such it starts just a hair under 80 thousand. Ours had a handful of options like lane assist, LED headlamps, a cold weather package and a few other items…and stickered at $85,045.    As with any top-of-the-line vehicle, you could run the sticker to over six figures if you went with the V-8 instead of the 6…and optioned it out to the max.

But you don’t have to.   The base A8 is a complete and well-engineered package that doesn’t need any more vitamins.

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