Taking a walk around the R8, I took note of the supercar’s low-slung good looks and sporty proportions. Externally, the R8 V-10 can be visibly discerned from the V-8 model in a few ways. The R8’s trademark sideblades receive flared intakes to help the larger engine to breathe. The front and rear bumper vents have been enlarged and finished in a glossy piano black. The HID Xenon headlamps have been replaced with the world’s first production full-LED arrays. Most obviously, chrome “V10” badges on the front fenders let everyone know how many cylinders you’re working with.
Under the rear glass, on display for all to see, is the 5.2-liter direct injected 10-cylinder gasoline engine. Not only does this power plant have two more cylinders and a full extra liter over the V-8, but it also gains a whopping 105 horsepower and 74 pound-feet of torque. The result is a complete transformation of the nature of the vehicle, whether cruising a back road or barreling, flat-out down the back straight of your favorite racetrack.