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2022 Audi A8 L 4.0 Review: Soft Touch

Ben Chia
04/10/2022
2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 exterior front CarBuyer Singapore

Audi’s luxo-barge gets a mid-life facelift with a new face, but what else does the A8 L in 4.0-litre V8 form offer for the money?


2022 Audi A8 L 4.0


Launched August 2022, Price S$704,675 with COE and VES (October 2022)
Four-door luxury limousine, five seats
460hp, 4.0-litre mild hybrid, VES C2, 12.4L/100km


PROS
Luxurious interior, especially for rear passengers
Quite nimble to drive for a big limo
Cool V8 burble

CONS
Unnaturally soft suspension
4.0-litre engine is thirsty


Photos: Ben Chia and Lionel Kong

SINGAPORE

The Audi S8 is one hell of a performance limo, but if you want something even more understated, there’s an Audi A8 with effectively the same engine, slightly less powerful, and more in tune with the luxury wafter that it was designed to be.

The Audi A8 L 4.0 tested here doesn’t quite have the same maniacal power as the S8, but it still offers an interesting option for those who prefer their limos to do the business quietly without seeking attention. There’s precious little on the outside that gives away the fact that this car boasts a twin-turbo V8 under the bonnet, not even a ‘V8’ badge anywhere, and it’s only when you start the car up and hear the engine burble do you realise something’s afoot.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 exterior front grille CarBuyer Singapore

Other than that, it really is just an ordinary Audi A8. The car has been given a mid-life facelift, but the changes, externally at least, are mostly limited to just the front end. There is a new grille up front that ditches the horizontal slats for a mesh-based design, and they are accompanied by refreshed headlights and a new bumper. The taillights also get a new signature apparently, but you’ll be hard pressed to tell the difference really.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 exterior front driving CarBuyer Singapore

Everything else is as per usual, and the A8 remains one of the most intriguing drives in this segment. It sounds a bit cliche to say that it feels smaller than its size to drive, but it does actually apply here. Thanks to the combination of lightweight construction and four-wheel-steering, the A8 handles rather capably, and doesn’t feel as cumbersome as its size suggests, although there is still a degree of understeer if you push too hard into the corner.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 interior CarBuyer Singapore

Ironically, it is the ride quality that proves to be the A8’s biggest drawback, although not quite in the way one would imagine. The car’s adaptive air suspension does indeed help smooth out the bumps mostly, but it does it in a none too subtle way, to the point where it feels a bit unnatural and floaty. It probably won’t affect most people too much, but those who suffer from carsickness might want to take an extended ride in one before deciding whether the A8 floats your boat.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 exterior rear driving CarBuyer Singapore

The car can be specced with the optional predictive active suspension (for S$30,000!), which we tried on the pre-facelift A8, and has apparently been refined for the facelift to be more sensitive and accurate in eliminating roll and smoothing out bumps. But if our experience with that system is anything to go by though, it probably won’t do much to eliminate the ‘unnatural’ feeling of seeing the bumps on the road and not actually feeling anything happen.



It’s sorta the same thing with the drivetrain, which is really neither here nor there. 460hp and 660Nm from the 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 seems plenty, and the A8 does seem to have no problem when you’re just keeping up with traffic, but at the end of the day it is still a two-tonne car, and it doesn’t quite pull with the same explosive force as the S8 at the top end. The V8 does sound pretty nice, but you only really hear it when you put your foot down, otherwise the car mostly floats along in silence.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 engine CarBuyer Singapore

And despite it being a mild hybrid setup, complete with engine-off coasting capability under low load causing, the A8 4.0 remains a fuel-guzzling monster. Audi’s official fuel consumption figures for the car are 12.4L/100km, and over our three day test drive we clocked 15L/100km. We reckon this could be down to the added weight of the long wheelbase L body style, but it’s still pretty eye-popping.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 interior CarBuyer Singapore

Still, if you’re mostly enjoying the A8 from the back seat, that’s not really gonna bother you. Instead, you’ll probably find the car a much more pleasant experience, with plenty of legroom thanks to the long wheelbase, and the airline-style headrest-mounted touchscreens letting you pair up your devices and stream videos or what have you for your entertainment. The rear seats also feature ventilation and massage functions, which are perfect after a long stressful day at work, and there is no doubt that the rear seats of the A8 is definitely the best place to be.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 interior rear seats CarBuyer Singapore

It does come at a price though, and that price is a staggering S$704,675 inclusive of COE. To put that into perspective, the S8 is ‘only’ about 30 grand more, and offers a fair bit more performance and driving exhilaration, albeit at the expense of some luxury and comfort. The smaller-engined 3.0-litre V6 version is nearly 200 grand cheaper, and offers most of the same creature comforts save for the rear screens, which means that the A8 4.0 sits in a really odd no-man’s land, and unless you really want a V8-powered luxury long wheelbase limo, it might be worth considering moving your sights upwards or downwards accordingly.

2022 Audl A8 L 4.0 exterior badge CarBuyer Singapore

Audi A8 L 4.0

Drivetrain typePetrol-electric mild hybrid
Engine3,996cc, V8, twin-turbocharged
Power460hp at 5500rpm
Torque660Nm at 1850-4500rpm
Gearbox8-speed automatic
Electric Motor11.2hp/55Nm
BatteryLithium ion, unknown capacity
System PowerNot stated
System TorqueNot stated
0-100km/h4.5 seconds
Top Speed250km/h
VES BandingC2 / +S$25,000
Fuel Efficiency12.4L/100km
AgentPremium Automobiles
PriceS$704,675 with COE
AvailabilityNow
Verdict:The A8 L 4.0 offers plenty of lux, a neat drive and an intriguing V8 engine, but proves to be slightly flawed in some areas

Tags:

4-door 4.0 5 seat a8 l Audi petrol sedan

About the Author

Ben Chia

CarBuyer's senior staff writer went out to explore the Great Big World, including a stint working in China (despite his limited Mandarin). Now he's back, ready to foist upon you his takes on everything good and wonderful about the automotive world. Follow Ben on Instagram @carbuyer.ben

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