New Audi A8 revealed in Barcelona


Audi has unveiled its all-new luxury barge, the A8 in an event in Barcelona. That said, it does look a lot more muscular and instantly recognisable from the last generation A8.

Should you still actually want to drive the vehicle yourself - how very 20th century - the A8's all-new chassis features four-wheel steering, a 48-volt electrical circuit and an active suspension setup that uses individual actuators on each wheel to effectively read the road ahead - and the driver's mind - to deliver maximum agility. The new A8 will definitely embellish the brand's image by innovating premium vehicle making.

The semi-autonomous auto, from the German automaker, has the ability to self drive up to a speed limit of 60km/hr giving enough room to the driver to check their emails and browse YouTube on the car's built-in infotainment system.

One step closer to self-driving, Audi's AI traffic jam pilot takes charge of driving in slow-moving traffic at up to 37mph on major roads where a physical barrier separates the two lanes.

The system uses a combination of radar and ultrasonic sensors, as well as a front-facing camera and a laser scanner to monitor the car's surroundings during piloted driving. Under its current description, the pilot driving program would fall under level three autonomy as defined by the Society of Automotive Engineers.

Obviously we haven't driven the new Audi A8 yet but we have driven the new 7 Series multiple times. It's also big deal for the automaker and drivers that really need to update their Facebook status while commuting. Audi has yet to announce a sell date for its new sedan.

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The second fun technology powered by the 48-volt system is the new suspension.

The saloon will have two chassis options: the standard A8 that has a 5.17-metre wheelbase and the A8 L, which takes that to 5.3 metres. Audi calls it "mild hybrid" technology, and it enables all models to coast along at speed with the engine switched off completely.

Later, there will be a long-wheel base Audi A8 L e-tron quattro with plug-in hybrid drive offering a 31-mile EV range. Audi says that this latest-gen MMI system is safe, faster and more intuitive to use. Executing on the brand's so-called "black panel architecture", the interior skips the rotary knob and touchpad of old in favor of of a pair of touch-sensitive panels to control everything from the infotainment system to the climate control functions.

The A8 also offers a self-parking function, which drivers can operate using an app on their smartphones.

The new Audi A8 will be available in a choice of five different engine options which include two 3.0 diesel and petrol engines and two 4.0 diesel and petrol engines, plus a 6.0 litre w12 petrol engines.

The whole process from detection to adjustment happens in just a few milliseconds as the camera generates information about the condition of the upcoming road surface a staggering 18 times a second, so everything happens without the car's occupants noticing. At the front there's a simpler, less cluttered design featuring a 10.1-inch touchscreen and a separate 8.6-inch touchscreen both built into the centre console. Audi has also put feet massagers for the passengers sitting at the rear seats. Each one is paired to a mild hybrid system that can allow the A8 to coast up to 40 seconds without the engine running, between 34 and 99 miles per hour.