Last weekend, I was visiting the Monterey area for obvious reasons. While walking the parking lot of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, I found this demure D2 generation Audi A8 in the most sultry shade that the automaker offered at the time. Now, I may be biased because my own C4 chassis Audi S6, lovingly known as Project Funf Zyl, is also painted in the same flattering shade.
All wheel drive, a nice healthy 4.2 liter V8, and leather for miles makes the D2 A8 an interesting proposition for cross country cruiser. It was certainly built for the autobahn, and offers comfort in spades.
I left my apartment on Friday morning around 3am, heading west out of Reno on I-80 through Sac-town and down to the Monterey peninsula along the 101. The rowdy Audi did the 700 mile round trip with no hiccups, averaging more than 24 miles to the gallon, which is a personal best. My 2.2 liter 5 cylinder pulled quite well, and there was a section through the mountains where we coasted for nearly 6 miles on a 6% downward grade. While the car is a bit dirty, it served me well, and deserved a bath when we got back home.
The A8, also dirty, having stayed out in the sand all day at the race track, still looked quite nice in the setting sun. As I left Laguna Seca and crested the hill to where Funf Zyl was parked, I noticed a pearl white vision stood alone on the hill. I knew that I needed to drive over to have a little sibling photography session.
While I vastly prefer the A8L for the added panache, I would certainly not kick this big booty beast out of bed for eating crackers. The D2 A8 is a little notorious for having poor transmission longevity, so I would certainly have to conduct a manual transmission swap, perhaps for the 6 speed found in the B7 RS4. If added power is your bag, it is certainly nice to fantasize about one of these with the European C5 RS6 4.2 twin-turbo swapped into the engine bay.
Interestingly, earlier in the day I also spotted an Audi Quattro Coupe in the same color, and had a lovely conversation with the owner. Unfortunately, I was so enamored with its beauty that I neglected to take any photographs, so this reasonable facsimile will have to do. So, which of the three would you prefer to have in your garage?
[Audi Quattro Coupe photo provided by Motortopia.com, all other photos copyright 2013 Bradley Brownell/Hooniverse.com]