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Hardcore GT badge returns as final encore for Audi R8

Audi has officially started winding down production of the R8 with the unveiling of yet another limited edition model based on the rear-wheel-drive derivative previously known as the R8 RWS.

Audi R8 GT returns as model's swansong offering
Aside from being rear-wheel-drive, the GT also receives a model specific carbon fibre aerokit and ten-spoke, 20-inch alloy wheels.

Reviving the GT moniker last used on the original between 2011 and 2013, the latest iteration serves as the final encore for Ingolstadt’s supercar that will be replaced “mid-decade” by a newly named, all-electric model currently being developed.

Audi R8 GT returns as model's swansong offering
Red-and-black interior pays tribute to the original R8.

No longer all-wheel-drive as the previous GT was, the newcomer loses a further 20 kg by receiving carbon ceramic brakes as standard, along with lightweight ten-spoke 20-inch alloy wheels wrapped in Michelin Sport Cup 2 tyres, coupling rods made out of aluminium and carbon fibre reinforced plastic anti-roll bars.

ALSO READ: Electric Audi R8 successor set for debut ‘mid-decade’

In addition, Audi has equipped the R8 GT with a Drift mode using what it calls Torque Rear that adjusts the Electronic Stability Control to provide intentional rear wheel slip, gloss black exterior surrounds, black badges and a carbon fibre areokit comprising a front splitter, side sills, winglets on the flanks of the front bumper, diffuser and a rear wing.

Audi R8 GT returns as model's swansong offering
Only 333 models will be produced.

Inspired to a large extent by the original R8, the GT’s interior differences comprise a black-and-red finish, red-and-black bucket seats with R8 GT embroidered seatbacks, red seatbelts, R8 GT inscribed floor mats and the option of a number plaque on the centre console representing the 333 units Audi will produce.

Audi R8 GT returns as model's swansong offering
Bucket seats feature R8 GT embroidered seatbacks.

Nestled in the middle, the normally aspirated 5.2-litre V10 that has been part of the R8 since the original’s debut in 2006, and the sole unit since the decision to drop the 4.2-litre V8 in 2015, has been uprated one last time with outputs of 456kW/565Nm.

Audi R8 GT returns as model's swansong offering
The long-serving normally aspirated 5.2-litre V10 will also bow-out once production wraps-up.

An uptake of 37kW/15Nm over the mill that powers the standard rear-wheel-drive R8, the added performance, plus an altered seven-speed S-tronic gearbox and kerb weight of 1 570 kg, means the R8 GT will get from 0-100 km/h in 3.4 seconds and 0-200 km/h in 12.4 seconds before topping out at 320 km/h.

Audi R8 GT returns as model's swansong offering
GT together with the original R8 and R8 GT, as well as the standard current second generation on which it is based.

Available from next year in three colours; Daytona Grey Metallic, Matte Suzuka Grey and Tango Red Metallic, pricing in Germany kicks-off at €225 000 (R3.9-million) with no indication yet of South Africa being privy to any of the 333 examples.

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