Supercars are generally announced with a furore. Fireworks will be set off, celebrity ambassadors invited, and perhaps even a smoke machine is used to add 'atmosphere' to the unveiling. Eventually, a series of sexed-up photos will be released, designed to make you covet the subtle curves and outlandish colour scheme.
This is all well and good, but the truth is that all you really need to know about a supercar can be found out on real roads. And in the Audi's case, it's all the better for it.
Images just don't do the new V10 Spyder justice (and that's saying something). The newest R8 is all about providing the driver with a visceral driving experience, one that combines the glorious roar of the internal combustion engine with the wind in your hair. While electric or hybrid cars may be all the rage, Audi is pushing back against that notion – with the 2017 V8 V10 Spyder.
It's naturally aspirated – that means no turbochargers – but the engine still manages to crank out 540 horsepower. The fact that it's a convertible is important too because once you've open the top (the electro-hydraulic system will do it in 20 seconds, and at speeds of up to 50kph), you can fully appreciate the boisterous 5.2-litre V10 engine.
Other updates include an updated and refreshed design that moves the cockpit forward, shortening the car slightly over previous models. The lightweight chassis is made out of aluminium, which is plenty rigid enough considering the car's convertible nature.
The seats adjust in 18 positions, while a Bang and Olufsen sound system has been built into the headrests – meaning driving with the top down won't get in the way of your music. The price for all this machinery? A cool US$175,000 base price.