The Audi A8 is a comfortable luxury limo with powerful engines and a classy, spacious interior. That said, the touchscreen infotainment system is a pain to use when driving
When it comes to interior design, the Audi has alternatives – such as the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes S-Class – well and truly licked. Everything you see and touch in the A8 feels posh – all models get leather upholstery and expensive-feeling trim pieces, and instead of conventional dials you get a high-resolution 12.3-inch display Audi calls its Virtual Cockpit.
If you like the sound of that then you’ll love the two huge infotainment screens that are stacked on top of each other in the centre of the A8’s dash. They’re bursting with colours and have beautifully detailed 3D maps. The only (rather large) fly in the ointment is that they’re not particularly easy to use on the move.
In a car like the A8 though, who cares – you’ll likely be getting driven. In which case you can forget about the awkward infotainment screens and focus instead on the acres of rear legroom. If you need even more room, A8L models are longer than the regular A8 and are available with Audi’s Relaxation Seats that have a footrest and a massage function.
Mind you, even the driver can relax in the A8. It’s available with clever autonomous driving tech that means the car can drive itself at speeds of up 37mph. Theoretically you can watch the onboard TV while the car handles the driving. Sounds good, but unfortunately UK law means it can’t be used to its full potential just yet – you still have to hold onto the wheel.
The rest of the A8’s tech is super helpful, though. The optional Dynamic Steering makes the big A8 very manoeuvrable in town and the Predictive Active Suspension can spot and react to bumps to smooth out your journey.
The latter even makes the A8 safer in side impacts – raising the body so that its tough floor takes the hit if you get T-boned.
The Audi A8 has more gadgets than a flagship iStore
Whatever A8 you choose you can be sure you’ll have plenty of power, although there are only two engines available. The 340hp 3.0-litre petrol is smooth, fast and makes the most sense if you’ll use your A8 mostly in town. The 286hp 3.0-litre diesel meanwhile, is better on fuel and feels every bit as quick on motorways, where it’s at its best.
And gobblings up huge mileages while carrying its passengers in maximum comfort is exactly what the A8’s supposed to do – if you’re looking for a posh luxury car then it has got to be near the top of your shopping list.
For more detailed information on the A8, read the interior, practicality, driving and specifications sections of our review over the following pages. Or, if you just want to see how much you could save, simple click through to our deals page.