Audi's R8 special has an exceedingly long name

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Carbon, downforce and specialness aplenty. And the longest name in supercar history

We didn’t see this coming. Audi has shown off a new special edition R8, of which a mere five will come to the UK.

The allocation may be small, but the name is big. It’s called – ahem – the Audi R8 V10 Plus Audi Sport Performance Parts R8 Edition. We think. It’s far simpler than its convoluted name suggests, though; this is the most powerful R8 with all of the Audi Sport division’s fanciest bits thrown at it.

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So the 602bhp 5.2-litre V10 and quattro all-wheel-drive remain, but lie beneath a much more aerodynamic body. A new carbon-reinforced aero package may look like it’s pandering to the Mansory and FAB customers of the world, but it’s effective, with a significant increase in downforce. Nearly 50 per cent more at the R8’s 330km/h top speed. At a slightly more relevant 150km/h, downforce is doubled.

There’s also three-way adjustable coilover suspension, lighter 20in milled wheels, Michelin Cup 2 tyres and ceramic brakes. Inside, the steering wheel is wrapped in Alcantara and has a motorsport-like 12’o’clock strip.

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Despite its seemingly lightweight, hardcore focus, its equipment list remains long, with leather, sat nav, a reversing camera and all manner of other goodies. This is no stripped-out trackday special.

Which might help justify its hefty price tag. You get rarity, of course; those five UK cars are part of a 44-car worldwide run, all of which come in Misano Red. And on a dollar-per-letters basis, there’s no better value car name on sale…

STORY Stephen Dobie

Author: TopGear
Top Gear is a British television series about motor vehicles, primarily cars, and is the most widely watched factual television programme in the world.