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Audi was nearly finished a cheaper R8 with a turbo 5-cylinder and RWD, then killed It

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Audi was nearly finished a cheaper R8 with a turbo 5-cylinder and RWD, then killed It

Apparently we could have had a 5-cylinder turbocharger Audi R8 that had more torque than the V10.

The Audi R8 was designed to be a true supercar, with sleek lines, aggressive styling, and an overall aesthetic that turned heads wherever it went.

Its engine options were supercar worthy too, initially debuting with a 4.2-litre V8 engine that produces up to 420 horsepower and later on the legendary 5.2-litre V10, which was shared with Lamborghini.

Audi R8 5-cylinder engine

Apparently the Audi R8 nearly had a third engine option, a similar formula used by Ford for their Mustang, where they had a smaller engine to make their sportscar more accessible.

According to, Marcos Marques, Project Manager of Porsche eFuels, Audi had developed an R8 with a turbocharged 5-cylinder engine from the RS3, paired with a manual transmission.

Audi R8 smaller enginePicture credit:

The story gets even better, because apparently that 5-cylinder turbocharged engine was able to kick out some serious performance with just a few modifications - even surpassing the V10's torque figures.

Despite having a winning formula, Audi decided not to complete the turbo 5-cylinder R8 project, and apparently, this was all down to the fact it would have ruined the image of the R8, as it was designed to compete with supercar heavyweights like Lamborghini and Ferrari and having a small engine would have been a mistake from a supercar point of view.

Adam Aubrey

Adam Aubrey

Content Producer

Wants to live the simple life, especially when it comes to cars and bikes. That's what tech is for he reckons, to make motoring simpler

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