Next Audi R8 will reportedly go electric

Audi PB18 e-tron concept

Audi PB18 e-tron concept

Back in March, Audi R&D boss Peter Mertens dropped the bombshell news that the Audi Sport division didn’t have any plans drawn up yet for a third-generation R8.

It didn’t mean Audi Sport was definitely going to axe the car after the current model’s run, but it did leave the possibility on the table.

A new report out from Autocar on Wednesday claims Audi Sport has since decided to go ahead with a third-generation R8 powered exclusively by an electric powertrain.

Without citing a source, the British publication reported the car will arrive around 2022 and move into hypercar territory thanks to a 1,000-horsepower output.

Audi R8 e-tron

Audi R8 e-tron

A spokesperson for Audi wouldn’t comment on the report but the automaker only in August hinted at an electric supercar with the unveiling of the PB18 e-tron concept during the 2018 Monterey Car Week.

The concept featured a 95-kilowatt-hour solid state battery and a trio of electric motors for a combined output of 764 horsepower and 612 pound-feet of torque. The concept also featured almost identical dimensions to the R8.

With Audi planning to launch multiple electric cars in the coming years and ultimately transition to a fully electric lineup, it’s natural the brand’s performance division also goes the electric route. In fact, Audi sport has already confirmed plans to launch the e-tron GT electric super sedan in 2020.

Audi Sport also has some experience with electric performance. The division rolled out an electric version of the original R8 in 2013 but killed the project at the last minute after performance was shown to lag the less expensive Tesla Model S. Audi Sport gave the electric R8 another go with the second-generation R8 in 2015 but stopped sales after just one year due to a lack of interest. The car was still slower than a Model S and cost more than $1 million. Hopefully Audi Sport gets it right the third time around.

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