2011 Audi A8 — Flash Drive
This 2011 review is representative of model years 2011 to 2014.
By Staff of MSN Autos
As a current Audi owner, I have a soft spot in my heart for the company's finely crafted cars. I wasn't disappointed by the new A8. The updated exterior styling is sleek but, as usual, understated. The large, prominent grille is aggressive and adds a bit of flair. Audi once again proves it provides the best interior in the industry. From the brushed-metal accents to the fantastic layout, it's a true masterpiece. From a driver's perspective, the A8 feels light on its feet, thanks to a curb weight several hundred pounds less than its competition. The large V8 engine is smooth and deceivingly quick when the car is pushed. At a test price of $90K, this luxurious sedan is priced competitively, but options can push the price into the stratosphere. –Joe Chulick
There's something amiss about the Audi A8. Basically, it is a wonderful car. It's beautiful, spacious, luxurious and powerful, and it has the well-proven quattro all-wheel-drive system. But it just doesn't feel quite right. It's not the weight or size — the BMW 7-Series is about as big yet feels sublime. No, I think the problem is the various drive-by-wire systems. These electronic connections for the steering, brakes and throttle are supposed to let the car's engineers perfect its responses. Sadly, in the Audi A8, the responses are far from perfect. The brakes don't respond for the first inch or so of pedal travel, and the engine seems lethargic when you depress the gas pedal. The A8 is an almost-great car that doesn't deliver on its potential. –Paul Hagger
The new A8 is a great-looking sedan, with classic large-sedan lines combined with modern high-tech lighting. In fact, it's the unique headlights that first grab your attention. The interior is made beautiful with more special lighting. However, I was surprised that there really isn't a lot of rear-seat legroom, especially considering the size of the car. The seats are comfortable, however. The A8 does deliver where it should — it is a great driver's car. The V8 engine has a wonderful sound and really gets the big sedan moving quickly. As expected from a flagship sedan, the ride is smooth and quiet — perfect for a long road trip or daily commute. Audi continues to up its game, and this new A8 can easily run with its German rivals from BMW and Mercedes. –Perry Stern