Entry-level Audi R8 to get 2.9-liter V6?

Entry-level Audi R8 to get 2.9-liter V6?

Audi is widely believed to be developing an entry-level version of the second-generation R8 powered by a downsized engine, and a new report coming out of England sheds insight into what we can expect from it.

According to Car magazine, the previous-gen model’s naturally-aspirated 4.2-liter V8 engine will be replaced by a brand new 2.9-liter V6 fitted with at least one turbo. The six-cylinder will make approximately 450 horsepower in its initial state of tune, roughly 35 more than the V8 it replaces but 90 less than the top-spec model’s naturally-aspirated 5.2-liter V10.

The displacement wasn’t chosen at random. China, one of Audi’s biggest markets, slaps tariffs on all foreign-built cars with an engine that displaces over 3.0-liters. Audi’s new mill falls below the threshold with less than 100 cubic centimeters to spare, so it will help boost R8 sales in the world’s largest new car market. An evolution of the mill will be fitted to the next RS 4 for similar reasons.

Previous reports hinted the V6-powered R8 was at least a couple of years away from hitting showrooms. However, since it was designed largely for China Audi likely won’t waste any time bringing it to the market, and we wouldn’t be surprised to see it bow in the next couple months.

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