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2011 Audi A8

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2011 Audi A8 Review

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Audi's "Truth in Engineering" tagline and commitment to endowing its cars with the highest levels of technology will be rigorously tested with the 2011 Audi A8 going against the stiff competition in the full-size premium sedan segment. The Lexus LS range consistently offers a wide range of technical features and much-lauded engineering precision, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class packs near-mythic levels of luxury and a very wide range of powerplant options, and the Jaguar XJ is a truly viable contender. The Audi A8's fiercest competitor, however, might be the BMW 7 Series, particularly in the area of driving dynamics. Two A8 models will be offered, the standard-wheelbase version and the long-wheelbase A8 L.

You'll Like This Car If...

You particularly enjoy tactile sensation when interfacing with the car's interior and controls. No other sedan in the segment delivers a higher quality interior than the 2011 Audi A8, evidenced in top-tier materials like real aluminum, silk-smooth leather and even top-grade plastic when plastic must be used.

You May Not Like This Car If...

You expect an entirely visceral driving experience. The 2011 A8 might not quite match the steering precision, feedback and road feel of a BMW, or the large number of engine choices from Mercedes-Benz.

What's New for 2011

The exterior styling of the 2011 Audi A8 sedan is all-new, yet largely follows the traditional and elegant theme established for the A8, with enhanced LED lighting up front. As with the R8 sports car, aluminum Audi Space Frame construction has helped hone the chassis and reduces that chassis weight by a claimed 40 percent over a comparable steel structure. Inside, the MMI control interface has been revised, incorporating an innovative touchpad for driver input.

Driving the A8
Driving Impressions

Three things help contribute to the quick 5.7-second zero-to-60-mph time of the 2011 Audi A8: Lighter construction due to the Audi Space Frame, a new 8-speed automatic transmission and a...

... 22-horsepower increase over the previous V8 engine. The driving experience is surprisingly improved over the previous version, with precise steering and a great transmission helping to make the car feel quite nimble and smaller than it actually is. And there's always that magnificent interior to keep you company. The Audi's quattro all-wheel drive must be lauded for giving the 2011 A8 sedan a level of road-holding feel unmatched by its competition.

MMI Touch
There's just no disputing it: The 2011 Audi A8 introduces a new level to the driver-to-car interface with the touch-pad. Simply draw the characters with your finger when selecting a destination, or let the intuitive touch-pad backlight for easy access to your favorite stations.

8-Speed Automatic Transmission
Audi has managed to increase the fuel efficiency of the 2011 A8 sedan by some 13 percent, thanks in part to a new 8-speed automatic transmission. The 8-speed gearbox operation is virtually seamless, delivering quick and nearly imperceptible shifts under normal driving.

2011 Audi A8 Details
2011 Audi A8 photo Interior

As stated above, there really is no better interior in this segment in terms of feel, fit, and finish. The standard upholstery is stitched Valonea leather; no smoother or more supple surface exists outside of offerings from perhaps Rolls-Royce or Aston Martin.
The controls on the center stack are logically grouped around the MMI in terms of function and Audi goes to great lengths to make sure each button or knob offers the same operational resistance as every other button or knob-small touches, but telling as to the overall attention to detail.

Exterior
2011 Audi A8 photo

Like most every new Audi model, there's no mistaking the headlights on the 2011 A8. As with the R8 5.2, the lights display not only the distinctive daytime-running LED strip, but are themselves some of the first on the planet to rely solely on LED clusters for illumination.
That signature trapezoidal grille dominates the car's face and gives it a distinct personality. The perhaps simple yet stylishly elegant Audi A8 body language is complemented by a new 19-inch wheel design, with 20-inch alloys available for extra cost.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

As the company flagship, every 2011 A8 and A8 L sedans come equipped with Audi's quattro all-wheel-drive system. Additional standard equipment includes 18-way power-adjustable front seats, burl walnut trim, directionally adaptive headlights and the next-generation MMI interface. Everything else a luxury-car buyer would reasonably expect as standard equipment on a vehicle of the Audi A8's character and image is, naturally, included.

Optional Equipment

Safety-related options for the 2011 Audi A8 include lane assist, adaptive cruise control, side assist to monitor blind spot areas, and Audi Night Vision Assistant with pedestrian-detecting and highlighting capability. For the audiophile, the high-end Bang & Olufsen sound system includes 19 speakers, 1,400 watts of power and is claimed to make the Audi A8 a virtual concert hall on wheels.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Audi A8 is offered with a 4.2-liter V8 of 372 horsepower and 328 lb-ft of torque, hooked up to an 8-speed Tiptronic transmission, which drives all four wheels via Audi's signature quattro all-wheel drive. The powertrain is everything you would expect and a luxury car deserves, making lots of smooth and responsive power and delivering it nearly-seamlessly to all four wheels, resulting in a car that will deal with just about anything the roads or the weather may throw at it.

4.2-liter V8
372 horsepower @ 6,800 rpm
328 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/27

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2011 Audi A8 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 22 Ratings for the 2011 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    8.7/10
    Performance
    8.8/10
  • Comfort
    9.0/10
    Styling
    8.9/10

Too much technology for the family to learn.

By on Thursday, March 17, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 36,000

10 2.0
overall rating 2 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
2/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
4/10
Quality
4/10
Performance
3/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "Safety features"

Cons: "Ride bumpy, dealership terrible,instruments diffic"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2

"The safety features are great and the car rides OK-but for the price there should have been much greater comfort. The ride was no different than a current lower priced but higher end GM car and it should be much better than that. The exterior design is boring and does nothing to distinguish what is suppossed to be the Audi flagship model. A friend had the sports car by Audi and pushed me to go for the A8L. We are still good friends, but I’m not going to rely on him for automotive guidance."

DO NOT BUY THIS CAR

By on Friday, January 22, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 12,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
1/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"The Audi A8L appears to be a great car. But there is a secret that Audi is keeping from you. If your A8 is in an accident, it can take 2-3 months for it to be repaired. The reason is that Audi limits the repair shops which are authorized to repair the vehicle. I live in a city with 5 million people and there is only one repair shop that employs one technician who can repair the vehicle. My car has been in the shop for 7 weeks and work has not even started yet. Audi implements this insane policy by refusing to sell parts to otherwise qualified repair shops. I complained to Audi USA and they refused to provide me an alternative vehicle or buy the car back. It makes no sense to purchase a car, in particular one that cost between $90k and $100k which you cannot drive for 2 to 3 months because of Audi's policy to limit the ability of collision shops to repair their vehicles."

15 people out of 19 found this review helpful

Best Car I Have Ever Drove

By on Friday, October 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fun to drive, very fast, comfortable, message seat"

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I picked up this car 5 weeks ago and I love it. I had the Benz S, BMW 740iL, Lexus 460 and nothing comes close to the Audi A8. Drives like a dream the comfort is off the wall the V8 engine is a rocket ship you feel like you are in a living room."

7 people out of 24 found this review helpful

I refuse to part with it even after 64K

By on Saturday, August 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 64,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Luxury, power, economy, styling, quality."

Cons: "Cannot think of any."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"As Angus McKenzie of Motor Trend put it - it's the thinking man's luxury sedan. After more than 64,000 miles it still drives like new. Both exterior and interior are like new. Ample power (0-60mph = 4.6 sec measured), 19 mpg in the city, 27 mpg on the highway, starts first time, every time. My wife and I have had numerous conversations about getting a newer car but it would have to be another A8 and since only the engine is different (my is the 4.2 non-turbo) - there is really no point. We have had two issues: an engine sensor failed which made idling rough - repaired under warranty. An occasional suspension noise which has been hard to reproduce for the dealer - but it's not bad enough to be annoying."

10 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Top of the line from a quality OEM

By on Tuesday, April 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"The reliability and feature set are as fine as any line in the world at this price point. While performance is more than adequate with a good deal of pep, it is not a rocket ship. The L series features incredible passenger comfort with a very quiet and smooth ride. Trunk is adequate."

18 people out of 43 found this review helpful

Has never failed to start.

By on Thursday, December 11, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 187,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "The drive and engine are awesome!"

Cons: "There are some electrical problems which are minor"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Have owned the car for 10 years now and apart from some electrical issues, have enjoyed the fabulous ride and handling. Handles like a smaller car, rides like a limo. You have to keep the curse control on b/c you will drive too fast and be stopped (like me) not realizing how fast your going. I live in upstate NY and it never fails in the snow. It truly is an amazing car and now that it's time to buy again and researching what's out there, I'm going to buy another A8."

36 people out of 68 found this review helpful

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