Audi is saying goodbye to its R8 halo sports car and its 5.2-liter V10 this year. The sendoff for 2023 will include a new limited-edition R8 Coupe V10 GT RWD model that will get a bump to 602 horsepower. The question we've been wondering about is how Audi intends to replace it; the move to Formula 1 will presumably be to market something. A Car and Driver report offers some more details about Audi's plans.
The R8 replacement — as Audi Sport confirmed last year — will be a high-performance all-electric car. The project name, for now, is the Rnext, though Audi may (and hopefully will) come up with something better before production. It should be more expensive than the current model, with a price tag in the $250,000-$300,000 range. A smarter version of Audi's quattro all-wheel-drive system would be a distinguishing feature. Lamborghini and Bentley will probably get versions of it.
The trouble is that Rnext is still a future project. Per the report, what the car will look like has not been nailed down yet. The critical question is whether Audi will develop its own sports car platform or use Porsche-developed platforms. One possibility would be for Audi to use the upcoming Cayman EV platform for a new TT and the electric 911 platform, when it materializes, for the Rnext. Porsche would provide the battery tech regardless of whether it runs on an Audi or Porsche platform.
That underlying uncertainty means that Audi's R8 successor may not arrive for a while. Car and Driver projects that the Rnext vehicle may not come until 2029, which would see it hit the market after vehicles that still seem far off in the distance — like an all-electric Mustang sports car.