Audi A8 – 2021 Review

Reveling in speed and comfort as I do, the Audi S8 has been a favourite since I first laid eyes on the 2nd generation model in the late 90s. Now in 2021, I’m catching up with the latest and greatest with the 4th generation of the vehicle, to both reminisce and look forward to what’s ahead for the Audi A8 in 2022 and beyond.

Why the A8?

The Audi A8 is always a delight to look at, offering spacious clean cut interiors and fearsome performance.

Having owned a 2011 Audi A8, which I was my main car for almost 2 years, I’m more familiar with these attributes than most.
The A8 was preferable for me, over “flashier” luxury cars, with a subtler exterior than my partner’s Mercedes S-Class, which always seemed to get the wrong kind of attention according to her .

Underneath it all however, the A8’s handling and fuel efficiency was what sealed the deal for me, making it a joy to drive home from London late in the evening, needing to stop at a station to fill up only once in a blue moon. With only fond memories of my previous A8 remaining, this week I’ve been kindly invited to test drive the latest model to offer my thoughts.

My thoughts

The first stop is with the car’s green credentials. With taxes on Co2 emissions popping up in the UK and on the continent, there’s no escaping the need for fuel efficiency and by all measures, the new A8 performs nicely, with it’s. With estimated Co2 emissions of 57g/km, I’m somewhat astonished. For reference my older A8’s specs were estimated at over 300g/km, marking an over 80% reduction by use of diesel fuel and the latest in electronic and battery innovations.

Next, my attention was immediately drawn to the adaptive cruise control, which I had heard “mixed” opinions on, with frequent suggestions that the system would disable itself unwarranted. Enabling the system on a 60 mph main road, I cruised for about 20 minutes, with no issues. This being said, this kind of technology is clearly still growing and developing, and I can’t imagine myself feeling secure in this functionality in its current iteration.

One surprise was the storage space. Where previous I’d been used to various orifices to throw my sunglasses into, the overall storage space felt reduced, with even the glove compartment shrinking away.

On the road, the four-wheel drive system was a dream. The handling was everything I’d remembered and more, however the wind-noise and bumps felt slightly elevated, beyond what I’d remembered from the older A8. I suspect a slightly large wheel would resolve this.

In summary

The new A8 lived up to my expectations, but little more. The new additions were impressive, while the core design reminded me of many years of fond memories with my A8.

There’s little I’ve been able to find on future plans for the A8 in 2022 and beyond, though I am skeptical that further automation will add to the more “primal” enjoyment of the A8 I have.