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Audi R8: The adventure ends in 2023

2023 Audi R8
Photo: Audi
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Daniel Rufiange
The R8 supercar made its debut for the 2007 model-year

Audi has been marketing the R8 for over 15 years, but since all good things must come to an end, the company has confirmed that 2023 will be the last year for the supercar. 

Those who want to order a model will have to act quickly. 

To mark the occasion, Audi has put the R8 in the spotlight at this week's Monterey automotive activities, which culminate in the presentation of the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance this Sunday. 

A handful of 2023 R8s will take part in the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Meeting at Laguna Seca. The cars will be used for exhibition laps around the track on August 19, led by nine-time Le Mans winner Tom Kristensen in an RS e-tron GT, the car that will serve as the standard-bearer for the Audi Sport division following the retirement of the R8.

2023 Audi R8 blue
2023 Audi R8 blue
Photo: Audi

Each of the R8s at Monterey wears a unique dress designed by Frank Lamberty, the designer responsible for the exterior styling of the original R8. 

The news of the R8's demise comes as no great surprise, as there have been many such announcements in recent years. The model has always managed to survive. But this time, it's really at a crossroads. Last year, Audi unveiled the special edition R8 V10 GT RWD, the swan song for the R8's 5.2L V10 engine.

The new 2023 Audi R8
The new 2023 Audi R8
Photo: Audi

The company hasn't announced what's next, but we do know that it's already committed to launching all-electric products from 2026. This commitment also extends to the Audi Sport division. The question of an electric R8 has been raised in the past. 

In fact, the company unveiled the PB18 e-tron concept in 2018, perhaps showing what an electric replacement would look like. However, that study featured solid-state batteries, which are lighter than current (liquid) batteries and can be recharged more quickly. This is a technology that Audi's parent company, Volkswagen, is preparing for the second half of the decade.

The R8's cousin, the Lamborghini Huracán, is also retiring. Its replacement will arrive at the end of 2024 and is expected to use a version of the Revuelto's carbon-fibre platform and a new V8 plug-in-hybrid powertrain.

Daniel Rufiange
Daniel Rufiange
Automotive expert
  • Over 17 years' experience as an automotive journalist
  • More than 75 test drives in the past year
  • Participation in over 250 new vehicle launches in the presence of the brand's technical specialists