Possible road-going version of Audi R8 LMS GT2 race car spied

Audi’s R8 supercar bows out after the 2023 model year. A successor is planned, though it will feature an electric powertrain and may no longer be called the R8.

To send out the current car, Audi is rumored to be preparing a hardcore special, and now a possible prototype has been spotted.

The latest spy shots show what looks like Audi’s R8 LMS GT2 race car testing at the N├╝rburgring, but the car here sports a taller ride height and is fitted with license plates, suggesting it’s meant to be driven on the road, as well as the track.

The R8 LMS GT2 was unveiled in 2019 for the revived GT2 series organized by SRO. It features the familiar 5.2-liter V-10, rated at 640 hp. The V-10 bows out with the end of production of the R8 and related Lamborghini Hurac├ín, and the hardcore R8 would also celebrate the engine’s run.

2020 Audi R8 LMS GT2 race car concept

2020 Audi R8 LMS GT2 race car concept

2020 Audi R8 LMS GT2 race car concept

2020 Audi R8 LMS GT2 race car concept

The R8 LMS GT2 also features a unique roof design. The car is actually based on the R8 Spyder whose open-top body is necessary to fit a roll cage. Carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic fills in for many of the panels to help keep weight down, resulting in a dry weight of just under 3,000 pounds. Many of those same modifications are seen here.

Audi R&D chief Oliver Hoffman hinted at a road-going version of an R8 race car in 2019, while he was still chief of Audi Sport. At the time, he also said Audi factory driver Frank Stippler was helping develop high-performance Audi road cars, particularly in the area of suspension and brakes.

Stippler was behind the wheel of this prototype as it conducted its first test laps at the ‘Ring.

Given the lack of camouflage gear, the debut might not be far off. Sources point to the car arriving early next year with a production run limited to 100 units. Stay tuned.

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