2016 Audi A8 Walk Around

The A8 sheetmetal is handsome but subdued. The long hood works complements the width of the car. The LEDs used front and rear for parking lights look upscale.


The cockpit has real panache, and doesn’t appear to have missed a detail, not in the wood, leather, aluminum or plastic, in their many lines, surfaces, textures and knobs, not to mention the suede headliner. The effect is exciting without being distracting, lavish and radiant while being restrained and careful. One example is the shift lever that copies the throttle in a yacht, although we must say it looks something like a putter poking out of a golf bag. With the top Bang & Olufsen sound system, two tweeters rise from the dash on startup.

There is all-day comfort in the front seats, with available adjustment from 22 different directions. The two power-adjustable seats on the rear bench are lavish enough that the driver must just want to ride back there instead, especially since there is available entertainment with a 20GB hard drive and two 10.2-inch screens; there’s even a folding table. The right seat has a footrest while the left seat can recline and massage you. There’s separate climate control for the rear. We say spring for the optional two-panel panoramic sunroof.

We like the Geeky in-car data services, but wonder if Google Maps, Google Earth and Bluetooth voice command is too much information. We like the steering-wheel controls but dislike the latest MMI, because it’s not intuitive and requires training. It’s a mouse-like rotating controller, with a scratchpad that enables you to spell out your desires. Your A8 can be turned into a WiFi hotspot with a subscription from T-Mobile.

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