7 Best Performance Upgrades for Audi R8

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Before we show our list of best Audi R8 mods. we want to give a quick history and run down of this beautiful super car.

The Audi R8 was first launched in 2006 as a 2-seat, mid-engined sports car.

It was put on Audi's world famous, permanent, all-wheel drive Quattro system.

The new R8 was designed by Audi Sport GmbH and is based on the Lamborghini Gallardo platform. Present day Audi R8 cars are built on the Lamborghini Huracan setup.

Core construction is based on what is called "Audi Space Frame" and uses an all aluminum monocoque which utilized space frame principles.

Built by Audi Sport GmbH at Audi's aluminum site at Neckarsulm in Germany.

Fun fact: The all new 2006 Audi R8 was the first vehicle to come equipped with full LED headlights. A first in any class. 

Also, read all of our European car blog content for other great product suggestions.


First Generation: 2006-15 (Type 42)

The first generation ran from 2006-2015 and was known as the Type 42.

First exposure to the public happened at the Paris auto show in 2006.

Initial models had 2 engine choices. A 4.2 liter V8 or a 5.2 liter V10.

A convertible model, called Audi R8 Spyder was launched in 2008.

A GT model was released in 2011. 

6-time 24 hour of LeMans winner Jacky Ickx called it "the best handling road car today" after he drove it.

White Audi R8 in a parking garage

A first generation, Type 42 Audi R8 with its polarizing side blades. Some people hated them, others loved the design.

The Audi R8 received a facelift in 2012 and a new model called the V10 Plus was added to the lineup.

Production of the first generation, Type 42 R8 came to an end in August of 2015.

The first generation Audi R8 interior was fairly basic but ergonomics and comfort scored high among consumers at the time of release. Automatic and manual transmissions were available, with the gated manual box being preferred over the slow shifting auto. 


Second Generation: 2015-23 (Type 4S)

The newly redesigned R8 was introduced at the Geneva motor show in 2015.

It was redesigned to be more angular and sharp at the edges and that gave the R8 a more aggressive look. 

It again shared a Lamborghini platform with the Huracan. 

Second generation cars were all outfitted with V10 engines and automatic transmissions, dropping the base V8 model.

Model year 2016 offered the R8 as a drop top Spyder once again. 

The R8 was available as the Audi R8 V10 and V10 Plus.

2017 saw the introduction of the flagship model, the Audi R8 V10 Plus Spyder (say that 10 times fast)

As an interesting option to the standard Quattro all-wheel drive cars, Audi made a rear wheel drive only model called the R8 RWS.

Audi R8 for sale in 2018 received a mid-cycle mechanical and exterior freshening. 

Base R8 horsepower was increased from 532 to 562.

The V10 Plus model was re-badged as the V10 Performance Quattro. This top end model boasted a big 612 horsepower. 

In 2015 an all electric model called e-tron was actually manufactured in very small numbers. Less than 100 units were made. 

second generation Audi R8 in silver

The second generation Audi R8 with its sharper edges and more angular style.  


 Audi R8 Common Problems

Are Audi R8 reliable? For the most part yes. 

As with most cars however, they do have a small handful of common issues to look out for if you are thinking about buying one. 

Here is a short list of things to inspect before purchasing an R8.

1. Failing A/C compressors

2. Failing magnetic ride shock absorbers

3. Failing trunk lid hinges

4. Heavy oil consumption

5. Failing multi-media control units

The current price for Audi R8 is 60,000-120,000 dollars. A wide range depending on year and model. 


5 Best Audi R8 Models

Which Audi R8 is the best?

Based on our research, the following list of 5 R8 models seem to be the most sought after and tend to hold their value the best based on desirability. 

1. 2010 Audi R8 Spyder 5.2 (Type 42)

2. 2011 Audi R8 Spyder 5.2 (Type 42)

3. 2018 Audi R8 coupe (Type 4S)

4. 2015 Audi R8 coupe (Type 4S)

5. 2006 Audi R8 coupe (Type 42)


At MGC Suspensions we specialize in European car suspension and exhaust performance products. 

 The R8 is pretty awesome straight from the factory but can be improved upon with some smart upgrades.

A modified Audi R8 can be really great, but can also be a disaster if done with inferior parts or work. 

Yellow Audi R8 convertible with top down

 Here is our list of top 7 Audi R8 performance upgrades based on customer reviews, sales, and experience. 



 1. KW Adjustable Lowering Springs

Nothing looks better than a lowered Audi R8.

Enjoy the best of 2 worlds with a height adjustable lowering spring kit by KW.

Fits all models, all engines. See fitment guide below for a complete list of applications and details. 

Get all the value and great looks of traditional lowering springs, but with the added option of ride height adjustability like a coilover.

Made of top quality chrome silicon steel, and designed with specific spring rates for sporty, yet comfortable street driving.

Vehicle specific bump stops with dust protection ensure proper fit and long term performance.

Typical lowering range is 5-30 mm, this range is set by your factory shocks limit for lowering.

This spring kit also works seamlessly with all factory active suspension systems so you won't lose any existing ride control features.

Ride height can be easily adjusted with the springs on the car using the supplied spanner wrench and easy moving trapezoid style shock body threads and collars.

Better handling, and a stance you can set exactly where you want.

2. Akrapovic Exhaust System


Shopping around for the best Audi R8 exhaust system?

The Slip-On Line exhaust system is constructed from a high-grade titanium alloy, boosting the R8’s power-to-weight ratio and handling characteristics.

The Slip-On Line (Titanium) has been precision engineered to improve throttle response and increase both the power and torque outputs.

The performance exhaust system is designed to reduce back-pressure to almost half of the stock levels through a combination of specialized muffler shapes, secondary resonators, and titanium dual-mode exhaust valves.

It is finished with two beautifully hand-crafted, larger diameter, carbon-fiber and titanium tailpipes that fit perfectly into the R8's stock diffusor.

It is tuned to enhance the sporty note from the V10 engine while still ensuring maximum comfort and enjoyment in the car’s cockpit.

The tone moves from a pleasant growl at low revs to the unique Akrapovic race-like sound as the revs rise and the excitement grows.

The sound can be further adjusted with the addition of the optional sound kit



max. power kW 396.8 / 8150 rpm 398.9 / 8150 rpm + 8.5 / 5950 rpm
HP (m) 539.5 / 8150 rpm 542.4 / 8150 rpm + 11.5 / 5950 rpm
HP (i) 532.1 / 8150 rpm 535.0 / 8150 rpm + 11.3 / 5950 rpm
max. torque Nm 385.9 / 6550 rpm 391.9 / 6500 rpm + 20.0 / 6050 rpm
lb-ft 284.6 / 6550 rpm 289.1 / 6500 rpm + 14.8 / 6050 rpm
weight kg 34.2 14.7 - 19.5
lb 75.4 32.4 - 43.0
% - 57.0
noise dB 100 / 3750 rpm 105.6 / 3750 rpm 5.6
inst. time min 360

measured with: Audi R8 5.2 FSI Coupé/Spyder 2016

3. KW V3 Coilovers


Fits all models and engines. Fits R8 with magnetic ride suspension.  

This is KW's top of the range coilover kit designed for street cars.

KW V3 coilovers video

Separate, 12 way compression and 16 way rebound adjustability to fine tune the ride exactly to your preference, or to optimize modifications like weight, tires, or additional bracing.

Individual compression and rebound adjustment dials make setting the response quick and easy.

Right out of the box, the dampers are preset for you to baseline response settings determined by KW, as an optimal starting point for your vehicle.

Micro tuning from that point to meet any need makes this V3 kit extremely versatile.

Variant 3 coilovers work within an approved lowering range that maintains proper suspension function and travel after lowering, usually 10-50mm.

Ride height adjustments are ultra smooth using dirt repelling, trapezoid shaped shock body threads and collars.

This means even after dirt and debris make their way into the shock body threads, the height adjustment collars will still turn freely with minimal effort.

Spanner wrench, adjustment dial, and setup manuals included.

All corrosion resistant parts are mounted to stainless steel struts for a lifetime of performance, even in harsh weather conditions.

4. SOUL Race Exhaust


The lightest and the loudest:  large diameter 3″ exhaust system encourages maximum power and engine tone for those who seek out the most visceral V10 experience from their R8.

Expect no check engine lights, only a grin every time you accelerate, and a look of awe from all around you.


+  Fits all Audi R8 vehicles (2017-2019)

+  Weighs 56.3 lbs / 25.53 kg less than factory exhaust

United States based customers purchasing this product are required to electronically sign and submit a Catless Exhaust Component Waiver here.

Orders do not ship until waiver is received.

SOUND:  Imagine the Audi R8 V10 Plus’ loudest note-amplified two fold. This exhaust is loud, mean, and encourages crackles and burbles that will be heard a mile away.

Make no mistake, this R8 exhaust system is as aggressive as you can get.

CONSTRUCTION:  Each system is made from mandrel bent .060″ wall T304L stainless steel tubing, CNC machined flanges, and laser cut brackets.

BOLT ON AND GO:  Each exhaust system is built and tested in a fixture to ensure perfect fitment.

Everything is included for a complete installation including caps for the factory vacuum lines.

LIFETIME WARRANTY:  Enjoy your SOUL exhaust components with confidence on both the street and track as they are covered by a lifetime warranty. 

+  This product eliminates secondary catalytic converters, is not CARB certified and may not be legal for use on emissions controlled vehicles; intended for off road  use only. 

5. Ohlins TTX-Pro Coilovers


Want the best coilovers for Audi R8?

Öhlins TTX-Pro coilovers have been developed for discerning club level racers and track day enthusiasts looking to use the identical technology as the pros to maximize performance.

The dampers are carefully chosen for each application from Öhlins’ professional TTX motorsports division.

Öhlins TTX dampers are pressure balanced at every dial setting without the need of excessive nitrogen pressure, resulting in a broad range of adjustability without cavitation.

The vehicle-specific suspension settings have been rigorously tested to ensure they deliver on track, while being compliant for the ride home.

TTX-PRO dampers are truly independent in compression and rebound adjustability, giving you the ability to fine tune your suspension set-up according to the conditions of the track, or for street use.

Finely threaded shock bodies let you easily adjust ride height down to 2.7 inches.

These coilovers are completely rebuildable for a lifetime of performance.

The benefits of Ohlins TTX-PRO coilovers become immediately apparent. Reduced weight and improved grip like never before.

As expected from Öhlins, only the highest quality materials and finishes are used.

If you’re looking to lap quicker through improved handling, then look no further than Öhlins TTX-Pro.

Simply one of the best coilover brands ever.

Audi R8 suspension upgrades at MGC.

6. Bilstein Clubsport Coilovers

Experience 100 different damping options for ride character and feedback with a Bilstein Clubsport coilover kit.

Progressive rate coil springs are matched with monotube performance dampers appropriate for street or track use.

Separate compression and rebound dials make it easy to achieve the exact response you need.

The red dial is for rebound and the blue is for compression.

Both easy to read aluminum adjusters are scaled from 1-10 for 100 possible options.

Some kits include camber adjustment with aluminum uniball support bearings for optimal cornering stability.

Simple and fast set-up changes can be made without any additional tools.

Height adjustable down to 2.5 inches so you can set the stance exactly the way you want it.

Enjoy complete suspension control with a Clubsport kit by Bilstein.

One of the best coilover kits available by Bilstein.

7. H&R RSS Coilovers


Your R8 is a beautiful car right from the factory.

Yet the stance leaves a bit to be desired. Make it even more unique with an adjustable set of coilovers.

H&R's ultimate coilover kit. High tech aluminum construction featuring high performance monotube dampers, and world famous H&R coil springs.

Height adjustable from 1 to 2.5 inches so you can set the stance exactly to your preference.

This kit is also externally adjustable for rebound and compression, so fine tuning road feel, response and handling is easy.

Some kits come in a beautiful black, hard anodized aluminum finish.

 Put your R8 on one of the best off the shelf coilover kits available. 

The best coilovers for Audi R8 are available here at MGC.


Front and Rear Kit


Damping Adjustable, w/o MRC



So what are the best performance upgrades for the Audi R8?

We've shown you our list. What are your thoughts? Leave us a comment to share.

You can also use our Suspension Builder to get personalized product suggestions based on your goals and budget. 


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1 Comment

henk vandemoortele

henk vandemoortele

I’m interested.

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