Audi A8 review

Interior

Manufacturer price from:£71,695
What Car? Target Price£61,527
Audi A8 2019 RHD dashboard
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Slide behind the A8's steering wheel and you’ll find a huge range of adjustment for the supportive, 22-way electrically operated seat. Four-way powered adjustable lumbar support is also standard, and even the steering wheel moves in and out, and up and down, electrically.

The Audi A8 is also beautifully made inside; in many places it feels even better screwed together than a Mercedes S-Class. However, while the material quality is generally superb, with lots of leather and smart veneers, the design of the interior is rather more conservative than that of the rival S-Class.

The A8 is easier to see out of than most of its rivals. Its broad side windows and large rear screen provide a good view in all directions, and you get front and rear parking sensors and a reversing camera on all trims. Standard LED headlights also make for outstanding visibility at night (adaptive Matrix LED versions, which shield oncoming traffic from being dazzled while maintaining main beam, are available as an option).

With so many gadgets on board, how easy is the A8 to interact with? Well, the 12.3in digital instrument display behind the steering wheel (called Virtual Cockpit) conveys a lot information with admirable clarity, as does the standard head-up display that projects selected information onto the windscreen so it's even closer to your line of sight.

Meanwhile, the dashboard itself features two high-definition touchscreens – a 10.1in top screen and 8.6in one below – which dominate the driving environment. These are easy enough to use when you're parked up but rather distracting when you're on the move; imagine trying to operate an iPad while driving and you'll get the idea.

True, the graphics are sharp, the system responds quickly to commands and you even get haptic feedback from the screen so you know that your prod has been registered. However, there's no doubt that the infotainment system in the rival BMW 7 Series is much more user-friendly.

Of course, with luxury coursing through the A8's veins, it’s not just those in the front who have access to the A8's gadgetry. Rear passengers in the long-wheelbase 'L' version of the A8 benefit from a standard 5.7in tablet stored in the centre armrest, which can be removed and used as a remote control for several of the car's functions, including the climate control system and the optional electric rear seats.

However, all models, including the standard-wheelbase car, can be ordered with an optional rear seat entertainment package, which features an Android tablet attached to the back of each front seat, allowing you to watch TV or a movie while being whisked to your destination.

The standard stereo features a six-channel, 180-watt amplifier and 10 speakers, including a subwoofer. If that’s not good enough, a 17-speaker, 730W Bang & Olufsen upgrade is available as part of the Comfort and Sound Pack. There's an even more advanced Bang & Olufsen system with 23 speakers and 1920W, but it's very expensive.

 

Audi A8 2019 RHD dashboard
Audi A8 2019 right side exterior tracking shot
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