I drove a stunning used Audi R8 – it’s a timeless classic and why you should buy one now if you can. | The Sun

Times are tough for people in the UK right now.

Interest rates at a 15-year peak and stubbornly high inflation mean prices everywhere are through the roof.

Buying a supercar might not be at the top of your shopping list, but there’s plenty of reasons to take time to dream – and maybe even make some money if you buy the right model.

I was lucky enough to get behind the wheel of a first-generation Audi R8 – a 2007 V8 version from the manufacturer’s special heritage fleet.

This means it’s treated to the very best TLC and lives in a heated garage among some of Audi’s most prized possessions.

Delivered by a very nice chap in a lorry, the 60,000-mile R8 looked absolutely stunning as it slowly backed out from its covered hiding place.


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It still looks every inch a proper mid-engined supercar, and the early design has more than stood up to the test of time.

It’s not as shouty and in-yer-face like some of its Italian rivals, instead just oozing a quiet confidence and classy image – definitely more smooth and Bond-like than any Miami Vice wannabe.

And, you find yourself just standing looking at it for far too long, just admiring it from all angles – I think the neighbours thought I was a bit weird.

Inside is just as special. Yes, it’s clearly an older car with some shiny trim and little imperfections dotted around the cabin, but it has an obvious quality like a classic Swiss watch or a bespoke piece of furniture.

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True, there’s lots of familiar parts that come from cheaper Audi models, but the R8’s low-slung driving position and fabulous metal gate manual gear shift make the experience a real delight.

You won’t find any foot-long colour touch screens or gimmicky extras here – it’s all about the driving.

Firing up the 4.2-litre V8 petrol engine requires you to use a key (remember those?), and when it barks into life it just puts a smile on your face.

Out on the road it feels quite a wide car, mainly due to its muscular rear end, although it’s surprisingly easy to drive and it feels like you could use it everyday without too many problems.

Visibility is good for a hardcore supercar and it’s easy to understand why some experts have labelled it the ‘TT’s bigger brother’.

Raw power is the R8’s party piece, however. With 414bhp and 317lb ft of torque it should manage a 0-62mph sprint in a little over 4 seconds, while you’ll need a smidge over ten seconds to shoot from 0-100mph.

Porsche 911 aficionados may claim their ride handles better, but the R8’s steering remains pin sharp and it’s a joy to sweep through flowing bends. It all feels stable and safe when pushing on, too.

It’s a fabulous car, and the bonus for us ordinary folk is that there are lots of used examples on the market to choose from.

You’ll have V10-engined models and drop-top convertible versions to think about, along with cars that feature automatic gearboxes, but I’d argue a V8 with a manual ‘box is the sweet spot as a used buy.

You should be able to pick up an early car with around 30,000 miles for between £35,000 and £40,000 – that’s the same price as a Kia Sportage. Incredible value.

And, a classic early R8 could be making you some money sitting in your garage. 

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Insurance specialists, Hagerty, claim that values of first-gen models rose by 37% from 2019 to 2022, with a further steady climb expected.

So, now could be a great time to buy. If you can, just do it – you won’t be disappointed.

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