Audi A8 - Used Car


Audi A8, front, action
Audi A8, side
Audi A8, rear
Audi A8, interior
Audi A8, rear seats
Audi A8, LED headlamps

THE Audi A8 is one of only a few cars that can be all things to everyone.

From superb refinement and marvellous engines to top of the market luxury in spades, this is a car that has it all.

Most models have massive performance and four wheel drive traction and they're all fitted with a delightfully smooth changing and switchable tiptronic automatic gearbox.

Put all this together and you have one of the top luxury cars on the market, with understated looks that only add to that total for me.

You might think that such a range topping big saloon would be hugely expensive even a few years down the road, but I've just found a 2012 3.0-litre diesel - by far the biggest seller - with only 36,000 miles showing, for under £10,000 - less than the price of many-a new supermini.

So you can have that luxury car you've always wanted.

The most sensible model has always been the 3.0-litre V6 diesel, which is no slouch in its own right and which can also manage real economy of 44-47 miles per gallon with decently low emissions.

It has power ranging from 201 to 262bhp and can can cover the zero to 62mph sprint in 7.6 seconds or less, so it's easily fast enough for the majority of drivers.

There's also a 4.2-litre V8 diesel with 345bhp that blitzes the sprint in just 5.6 seconds and can still muster 36-38mpg.

Over in the petrol camp - if you can find one - is a choice of silky smooth 3.0, 4.0, 4.2 and 6.3-litre units, with power ranging from 285 to no less than 493bhp.

And for those who want pure performance with their luxury, one of these has to be top of the list, as demonstrated by Jason Statham in the Transporter films.

However, economy drops to between 23 and 31mpg for all except one.

That's the TFSI hybrid, which consists of a 2.0-litre petrol engine plus an electric motor. This set up gives a total of 241bhp, so that zero to 62mph takes 7.7 seconds and economy is a very creditable 44mpg. But it loses the quattro four wheel drive that the rest of the range enjoys.

All have wonderful comfort, library reading room hush and immense refinement.

But give one its head and they also have the most marvellous handling and road-holding - helped by that four wheel drive of course - which will also keep them going in the worst that winter can throw at us.

I most recently drove the 3.0-litre TDI and even this engine is inaudible, apart from a slight hum as the revs rise at a plant of the right foot. Road and wind noise are so subdued as to be hardly worth mentioning.

The automatic gearbox takes all the strain in its stride and performance is excellent to mind blowing, depending on the model you buy.

The luxury inside is wonderful. There are acres of leather, electrically adjustable heated and cooled seats, satellite navigation and a Bose sound system which could probably fill Wembley stadium.

The steering is full of feel, the boot is vast and there are many little touches, including a rear sunscreen which lifts at the touch of a button.

All in all, the A8 is absolutely brilliant, and it comes with Audi's very good reputation for longevity and reliability.

But don't buy one without service history. You have to know it has been properly taken care of and, of course, even servicing and tyres for such a car come at a little more than the ordinary.

Prices are for the 3.0-litre diesel. Pay about £10,500 for a '12 12-reg Executive SE, or £21,100 for a '16 16-reg Sport Executive.


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