THE sort of savage performance usually reserved for supercar exotica is ready to rip up the roads in the shape of the new Audi S8 plus.
Prices start at a princely £97,700 for a luxury liner capable of scorching from 0-62mph in just 3.8 seconds and boasting a top speed of 189mph.
When it hits the streets early next year, the latest S8 will have an uprated engine, new bodykit and feature a power-boosting dynamic package.
Ramping up the punch from the 520PS offered by the ‘standard’ S8 to a whopping 605PS, the S8 plus is also capable of producing up to 750Nm of torque on demand – the highest of any Audi in the current model range.
We’re talking a power output equivalent to almost seven A1 1.0 TFSI models.
The engine is actually a modified version of the 4.0 V8 bi-turbo unit already used to power the current S8 but extensively modified with special engine management.
An overboost function enables the super saloon to achieve its blistering acceleration up to an electronically limited 155mph top speed, at which point the optional dynamic package lifts the potential to 189mph.
And when you need to ease off, fade-resistant carbon-fibre reinforced ceramic brakes – featuring calipers finished in anthracite-grey with the Audi ceramic logo – do the business.
Chassis highlights include the S sports adaptive air suspension and dynamic steering, both of which have been tuned specifically for the S8 plus.
UK spec models are fitted with 21-inch alloy wheels in a unique high-gloss black double-spoke design shod with specially designed size 275/35 tyres.
It all comes thanks to a combination of Audi’s engineers and its specialist high performance division quattro GmbH.
The latter has modified the car’s sports exhaust system, with a pair of oval high-gloss black tailpipes on the left and right, for a distinctive V8 soundtrack.
As for style touches, S8 logos adorn the front and rear with V8 T badges on the front wings and a there’s also an exclusive matt-effect paint finish in floret silver. Otherwise all the colours offered on the S8 are up for grabs.
Audi says matrix LED headlights will be standard while, inside, there are leather sports seats with 22-way adjustability and memory function.
Standard kit includes a power-operated hands-free boot lid, 14-speaker BOSE surround sound, advanced parking system with top view camera, privacy glass, power door closure and adaptive cruise control with Audi pre-sense front.