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Kelley Blue Book ® - 2002 Audi S8 Overview

Vehicle Overview from Kelley Blue Book

KBB.com 2002 Audi S8 Overview

This Is One Car Your Kids Won't Mind Being Seen In

Audi's high-performance version of its full-sized luxury sedan is the S8 Quattro. Derived from the aluminum A8 platform, the S8 receives several performance upgrades aimed at pleasing even the most demanding enthusiast. Beginning under the hood, Audi has tweaked the 4.2-liter V8 engine to produce 360 horsepower; a five-speed automatic with Tiptronic manual shift control is the only transmission choice. Together, the team of engine and transmission do an admirable job of accelerating the big Audi, both from a standing stop and while performing passing maneuvers. There is ample torque, enough so that you will be pleasantly surprised at the g-forces generated after depressing the gas pedal.

The handling capabilities of the S8 are as good as you'll find in this class of sedan; you can thank the Quattro all-wheel drive for that. We felt completely at ease behind the wheel, even when the road conditions turned slick. The steering is quick and precise and the turn is almost instantaneous. No matter what type of curve we pushed our test car into, whether a wide-radius sweep or twisting switchback, it was handled with confidence and stability. The reason for this increased handling prowess becomes obvious once you sort through the details. The suspension is 30% stiffer than that of the A8 and the body has been lowered an additional 20mm. All S8s have larger diameter stabilizer bars and stiffer shocks with increased compression dampening and their suspensions are aided by the addition of enormous 18-inch Avus wheels and 245/45 ZR 18 performance tires.

The interior also receives special attention, with a series of features and materials unique to the S8, most notably the sport front seats. With their wider side bolsters, longer seat bottoms and 4-way power lumbar support, it's hard to imagine anyone who couldn't be comfortable while motoring in this car. The standard A8 steering wheel is replaced with a thick-rimmed leather three-spoke wheel, complete with fingertip controls that allow the driver to shift gears without removing his hands from the wheel. A suede-like material called Alcantara occupies the seat inserts as well as the overhead liner and rear shelf. Everything in the S8 interior seems to flow together as though it was carved from a single block of wood and leather. Just about every imaginable creature comfort is standard on the S8 including: Dual-zone climate controls, 14-way power adjustable heated front sport seats, 200-watt Bose sound system, front and rear side airbags and Homelink. Optional on the S8 is the Audi navigation system, electric rear sunshade, solar sunroof and the OnStar system.

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