Nothing says “I’ve arrived” quite like specifying your brand-new Audi A8 with an extra set of doors. Yep, this is the A8 L Extended, a 6.36 metre-long six-seat, six-door one-off limo that Audi says it’s taken over a year to develop.
Indeed, 12 months. Clearly then, adding 1.09m to an A8’s already quite long wheelbase is no easy task. Audi’s engineers lengthened the side sills with extruded aluminium sections and added a load of extra tubing and cross-bracing to the roof to, it claims, make a limo with very nearly the torsional rigidity of a normal long-wheelbase A8. Even though it’s roughly half a Smart Fortwo longer than a Range Rover, at 2.4 Smarts in all.
Predictably, inside there is much opulence. Beneath the 2.4-metre panoramic roof (itself nearly the length of a Smart) are six individual seats covered in Audi’s finest ‘Valcona’ leather. Third-row passengers, with their own coolbox and infotainment system, are best off.
Power comes from a 3.0-litre six with 228kW and 440Nm of torque, reaching the ground via an eight-speed auto’ and Quattro all-wheel drive. All normal Audi. 0-100kph takes 7.1 seconds, and the top speed is capped at 250kph. Hiding under those 19s are the brakes from the S8.
Where or to whom this one-off XXL A8 is headed, we don’t know. Wherever, Audi says it’s had “further requests” for long A8s already. No word on price, but selling a few more will no doubt make all that development work feel a bit more worth it.
We’ll take ours as an S8 Plus, thanks.