Audi A8 Performance
Critics note that the 2014 Audi A8 offers surprisingly nimble handling, as well as accurate steering and a range of powerful engine choices. Test drivers also note that the 2014 A8 has a comfortable, composed ride, thanks in part to its adaptive air suspension and Audi Drive Select, which allows you to customize the A8’s engine, transmission, suspension and steering settings.
- "The 2014 Audi A8 has emerged as the driver's choice among full-size luxury sedans, and there are two reasons for that. First of all, the A8 feels lighter and more responsive than its rivals, and its standard quattro all-wheel drive provides tenacious grip in corners." -- AutoTrader
- "Now for 2014 the engine lineup sees another change, with the addition of a 3.0-liter diesel V6. Performance is quite satisfactory, with a 0-60 mph time of 6.3 seconds along with fuel economy that's the most frugal in the high-end luxury sedan segment: 24 mpg city/36 mpg highway and 28 mpg combined." -- Edmunds
- "The Audi A8 offers a fine balance between a luxury cruiser and sports sedan. This dual personality is owed in large part to the adaptive air suspension, which delivers the best of both worlds in terms of ride quality." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Most important, the 2013 A8 L 3.0T feels just as good to drive as the old 4.2 does. Its aluminum-intensive construction allows the big Audi to waft along the road feeling much lighter, smaller, and more tossable than any full-size luxury sedan has a right to." -- Motor Trend (2013)
Acceleration and Power
The 2014 Audi A8 comes with a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that produces 333 horsepower and an eight-speed automatic transmission, while a 420-horsepower twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 is optional. A8L models are available with the same engines, as well as a 500-horsepower, 6.3-liter W12 and a 240-horsepower, turbodiesel 3.0-liter V6, which is new for 2014. The base A8 gets great fuel economy for the class at an EPA-estimated 17/28 mpg city/highway, while the turbodiesel A8L’s fuel economy is even more impressive at 24/36 mpg.
The high-performance Audi S8 comes with a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine that generates 520 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 481 pound-feet of torque at 5,500 rpm. An eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard. Audi reports that the 2014 S8 accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and has a top speed of 155 mph.
Reviewers say that the base A8 accelerates quickly, and that there’s plenty of passing power on tap to get around slower-moving traffic. The V8-powered A8 is quicker still, and test drivers appreciate the power and fuel economy that the turbodiesel A8L offers. Critics note that the eight-speed automatic transmission is silky smooth, and it downshifts quickly when more power is needed.
- "The supercharged V6 is remarkably potent for such a small motor, while the turbodiesel V6 isn't much slower and delivers exceptional fuel economy. The twin-turbo V8 is the stuff of dreams for those who appreciate both speed and subtlety -- it's strong, smooth and utterly seductive." -- AutoTrader
- "Power from the Audi A8's base V6 is plentiful, whether under acceleration or cruising down the highway. Passing slower cars is effortless and the brakes are equally up to the task of bringing the big sedan to a halt. The 4.0T power plant is even more impressive." -- Edmunds
- "Now available in a variety of Audi models, the new 3.0-liter turbodiesel signals a bright future for oil-burners, delivering a mountain of instant torque without the familiar agricultural noises at low engine speeds and idle." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "The silky eight-speed automatic transmission was quick to downshift when extra power needed to be summoned for passing or merging and upshifts were unnoticeable." -- AutoWeek (2013)
Handling and Braking
Most reviewers are impressed with the 2014 Audi A8’s adjustable air suspension, which allows the driver to choose between Comfort and Dynamic (sport) driving modes, or an Automatic mode that’s the middle ground between the two. They say that the A8 offers a comfortable, composed ride, and that it handles well when the road gets twisty, thanks in part to responsive steering and the tremendous grip provided by the A8’s standard all-wheel drive system.
- "First of all, the A8 feels lighter and more responsive than its rivals, and its standard quattro all-wheel drive provides tenacious grip in corners." -- AutoTrader
- "With its all-wheel drive, well-tuned suspension and crisp steering response, the A8 handles like a smaller, lighter sport sedan in either wheelbase configuration. Yet over broken pavement, the Audi flagship delivers a compliant, composed ride fully in keeping with its luxury sedan status." -- Edmunds
- "The quattro all-wheel-drive (AWD) system must be lauded for giving the 2014 A8 a level of roadholding feel unmatched by its competition." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "The standard adaptive air suspension does an impressive job of giving a ride that allows the driver to feel in touch with the road, while also soaking up larger surface imperfections." -- Motor Trend (2013)