By Mike Torpey on 2014-05-12 - Driving Force news editor and responsible for organising our daily output. He was staff motoring editor of the Liverpool Echo for 20 years.
Laser lights the way
AUDI'S cool new R8 LMX model will be the first car in the world to take to the road with standard laser high beam lighting.
The limited edition supercar will make its UK public debut at June's Goodwood Festival of Speed before going on sale priced from £160,025.
Boasting 570PS of wallop for 0-62 in 3.4 seconds and a top speed of 198mph, the R8 is due to hit the road this autumn.
Based on the V10 plus model with its mid‑mounted 10-cylinder engine, double wishbone suspension and Audi Space Frame aluminium body, it will be available exclusively as a coupe with a production run limited to 99 vehicles.
Transmission is via a seven-speed S tronic gearbox and the car comes with Audi's quattro all-wheel drive system and 19-inch wheels with red brake calipers.
The light emitted by laser beams before they pass through a phosphor converter is blue, the same as the exclusive Ara Blue crystal effect paint finish, though the R8 LMX can also be ordered with Daytona Grey matt effect or Mythos Black metallic.
The new flagship model is also marked out by a large fixed rear spoiler for increased downforce while the sports exhaust system features high-gloss black tailpipes.
Blue accents continue the theme in the interior with its bucket seats upholstered in leather and finished with blue diamond stitching and backrest covers.
Audi engineers has always worked closely with their racing colleagues on the development of lighting technologies.
And the combination of LED and laser high beams will be used for the first time on the new R18 e‑tron quattro at Le Mans next month.
With the new laser high beams, one laser module per headlight generates a cone of light with twice the range of the all-LED headlight.
The laser spot, which is active at speeds of 37mph and above, supplements the LED high beam in the R8 LMX to enhance visibility and safety.
An intelligent camera-based sensor system detects other road users and actively adjusts the light pattern to avoid dazzle.
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