Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

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Thread: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

  1. #1
    Senior Member z356's Avatar
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    Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    Select Audi R8 dealers in Northern California have been asked to submit recommendations to Audi of America re: good prospects for the upcoming MY2014 R8. Audi is reviewing these names and will ultimately select those they will invite to this space-limited 'Lead Performance Event' at Infineon Raceway! I really don't know how many 'Lead Performance Events' Audi will hold in Sonoma this April or if they plan to do a 'Roadshow' across America to promote the revised MY2014 R8! But lucky for me, I was the 'candidate' of my local 'Audi Monterey Peninsula' <http://www.montereyaudi.com/index.htm> for an event to be held in Sonoma on April 11-12, 2013! Special thanks go to Davin Sanford, Internet Manager <dsanford@cardinaleway.com>, who is an enthusiastic & energetic sales associate! He has always been very helpful re: R8 matters and I will continue to refer him business!

    Here was the invitation which arrived via email this afternoon:

    "Lead Performance Event

    To prepare for the launch of the race-engineered 2014 Audi R8, Audi of America invites you to join this mythical supercar in a lead performance during two days spent beyond the hills of San Francisco and on the track at Sonoma Raceway.

    You and a guest will receive:

    + One night of accommodations at The Carneros Inn in Napa
    + Dinner during a VIP reception
    + Breakfast at FARM restaurant at The Carneros Inn
    + Transfers to Sonoma Raceway
    + Instruction and track time with the 2014 Audi R8 and other Audi performance models

    This is an exclusive opportunity to test your mettle behind the wheels of the Audi R8 V8 and V10 in their natural environment before they arrive at American dealerships. From the new seven-speed, dual-clutch S tronic® transmission that balances controlled agility with unbridled power, to redesigned LED headlights and taillights and other optimizations worthy of the red rhombus, you'll be immersed in the nuances that define the 2014 R8 and all-things Audi Sport.

    The R8 Lead Performance event will take place April 11–12, 2013, and you are encouraged to register as soon as possible in order to best plan for this unforgettable experience."

    ********************
    This is a very good idea from Audi of America and I commend them for the effort! It will not be inexpensive for them - they are doing this as 'complimentary' for their prospects & guests! Hopefully it will create the 'buzz' needed for the revised MY2014 R8 to be successful in this competitive US marketplace! I expect I will meet other R8Talk Forum members at the event and will post photos here afterwards!

    Saludos,
    Eduardo
    Carmel
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  3. #2
    Senior Member alin2's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    That's fantastic. Photos, review, and possibly video clips (?) would be greatly appreciated!

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    These events are happening all over the country.. We have one here in Atlanta and another in New York. I know there is one more.. Just don't remember where it was off the top of my head..


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    Senior Member swansailor's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    I'll see you there

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    Senior Member duhawks's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    Quote Originally Posted by audiatlanta View Post
    These events are happening all over the country.. We have one here in Atlanta and another in New York. I know there is one more.. Just don't remember where it was off the top of my head..


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    Let me know when the one in Atlanta is.
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  7. #6
    Senior Member z356's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    Quote Originally Posted by audiatlanta View Post
    These events are happening all over the country.. We have one here in Atlanta and another in New York. I know there is one more.. Just don't remember where it was off the top of my head..
    Let's see. From a marketing point of view and to hit the largest concentration of prospective new R8 buyers, we would expect to see these 'Lead Performance Events' also held at 'Chicago', 'Dallas' and 'Miami'. I assume Southern California and Arizona crowd is being invited to fly north to 'Infineon-Sonoma' because the track is already set up for the 'Audi Sportcar Experience'! But Garrett, are you suggesting that there is only three locations planned for these 'events' in the entire country or just the East Coast?

    Quote Originally Posted by swansailor View Post
    I'll see you there
    swansailor, we will recognized each other by the secret R8Talk handshake! Hopefully, you learned that 'ritual' from 'Desperado' and it's what makes this forum so 'unique'!

    Saludos,
    Eduardo
    '11 R8 v8 Spyder / 'Lava Gray' / Red
    '11 Mini 'John Cooper Works' Hatch / 'Eclipse Grey'
    '74 VW Beetle Cab / 'Black'
    '70 Porsche 911E Targa / 'Crystal Blue' / Black
    Ex Audi / '03 Audi RS6 / 'Daytona Grey' / Silver
    Ex BMW's / '95 M3, '04 745i, '07 650i Conv, '01 Z8
    Ex Porsche's / '68 912, '70 911T, '83 944, '72 914, '84 911, '86 944T, '60 B Cab, '54 Pre-A Cab, '60 B Roadster, '64 C Cab, '59 Conv D, '64 Carrera 2 Cp, '65 C Cab, '90 C4, '97 986 (2), '73 911T, '07 C2S, '12 Spyder.

  8. #7
    Senior Member swansailor's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    Half a day for my wife and I at Sonoma Raceway (a.k.a Sears Point) for the "facelift" 2014 R8 launch. Quick feedback:

    A LOT of beautiful shiny new cars everywhere (every Audi performance model plus examples of the V8, V10 and cabriolet 2014 R8s). As well as hosting some 20 people for the 2014 R8 launch there were two bus-loads of visitors from Korea and Japan who went driving on the Sonoma back roads (we speculated that these were Audi dealers).

    No time wasted with any "sales" presentation of the car. We were split into groups and went directly to slalom exercises in the paddock or cornering exercises on the track after which we two sessions lapping the full track all in the usual "lead-follow" method of the Audi Sports Car Experience. All of these activities moved along on a very tight time-table. We then had lunch and a chance to speak 1 on 1 with Stephan Reil (Head of Development at Quattro GmbH). We also spent time at dinner (the evening before) and at lunch with the US Product Manager for the R8 (Mark ?). We asked Mark about timing of the totally "new" R8 and were told "2 to 3 years"; we could not get any details of changes or features.

    Most of the changes to the car are "cosmetic" and already widely discussed so I won't go into them. All of those models are still available in gated manual or S-tronic and the main focus of all of talk was that the S-tronic is THE major feature of the new model (we got the usual "there are a lot of small changes which add up to a significantly refined car" statements but the only one they talked about was the transmission. I would give a summary of my impressions but MotherTucker has already done a great write-up in the "R8 S-Tronic characteristics" thread and all I would do is repeat what he wrote. The speed and smoothness of the shifts are awesome and the car still sounds great on the downshifts.

    I drove the V8 and V10 versions in two different run sessions. The V8 didn't seem significantly different to my old car; the V10 definitely requires a gentler right foot coming out of bends and is a bit more tail-heavy. All in all not enough to make me want to change my R-Tronic car but the new transmission is sure to be very popular because it is awesome.

    I spent 10 minutes talking to Dr. Reil. Here are a few of the things I picked up from him:
    • They have looked at putting a "proper" bucket seat in the car for the US market but that will almost certainly wait until the all-new model; reason is related to side air-bags.
    • A lot of attention is given to weight in the R8. The lack of some of the convenience features found in other recent Audi models is related to the decision not to add to the weight of the wiring loom with additional cabling. Updating to a newer bus-structure will wait until the all-new model is introduced.
    • Dr. Reil is a big fan of the gated-shifter (after looking around to make sure my wife wasn't listening he described the sensation of shifting from first to second gear as "erotic").
    • The reason why the brake fluid reservoir is hidden under the trim in the trunk instead of being exposed like the wind-shield washer fluid bottle is to avoid owners accidentally pouring washer fluid into the brake reservoir. I showed him some photos of the modification I made to mine (cutting a hole and installing a screw-on hatch) and he was really interested in it ….thought it would be something to consider for the future all-new R8 model. I told him that many of us who are track enthusiasts would appreciate that.
    • For track driving Dr. Reil recommends never to use the S-Tronic (or R-Tronic) in automatic mode because it may shift in a bend and de-stabilize the car.
    • I asked about the functioning of the ESP system because the explanation given by the instructor earlier in the morning had confused me. Dr. Reil explained that a brief push of the button raises the thresholds of the traction control and the stability program to allow some degree of drifting etc. for "sporty track driving". Holding down the button for > 3 seconds turns the system completely off and, unlike the systems in other sports cars (he mentioned two well-known German brands) it will NOT turn itself back on in an extreme situation when the car is spinning or skidding and the brakes are applied (this was the conflict with what the instructor said). I asked why? He told me that a skilled racer, who uses left foot braking and right foot acceleration simultaneously to steer the car, would trigger this switch-back-on of the ESP ….which, of course, would then try to counter what the he or she was actually trying to achieve and most likely spin the car.
    • Someone else asked Dr. Reil if there will be a GT version of the 2014. The answer was "we are still discussing it but are very concerned not to annoy the people who purchased the existing GTs on the understanding that it is a strictly limited series of 330 cars".

    It was also great to meet and talk to some other current or future R8 owners. Audi treated us royally (luxury accommodation, excellent dinner and lunch and access to some knowledgeable and senior Audi management).

    Best of all ....my wife, who has never driven my R8 or driven on a track accepted the challenge of driving in this event and even though she was scared ****less, she did a great job and I was really proud of her. She said she really enjoyed the slalom and cornering exercises but was very intimidated by the track session.

    A big thank you to my dealer (Stevens Creek Audi in San Jose CA) for getting us invited.
    Last edited by swansailor; 04-13-2013 at 08:27 AM.

  9. #8
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    Sounds like a great experience - thanks for the write up. Wish I could have been there!
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  10. #9
    Senior Member z356's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    I have a description of my experience (including photos I took yesterday) at the Audi 'Lead Performance Event' at the following link:

    http://teamspeed.com/forums/performa...nia-april.html

    Saludos,
    Eduardo
    '11 R8 v8 Spyder / 'Lava Gray' / Red
    '11 Mini 'John Cooper Works' Hatch / 'Eclipse Grey'
    '74 VW Beetle Cab / 'Black'
    '70 Porsche 911E Targa / 'Crystal Blue' / Black
    Ex Audi / '03 Audi RS6 / 'Daytona Grey' / Silver
    Ex BMW's / '95 M3, '04 745i, '07 650i Conv, '01 Z8
    Ex Porsche's / '68 912, '70 911T, '83 944, '72 914, '84 911, '86 944T, '60 B Cab, '54 Pre-A Cab, '60 B Roadster, '64 C Cab, '59 Conv D, '64 Carrera 2 Cp, '65 C Cab, '90 C4, '97 986 (2), '73 911T, '07 C2S, '12 Spyder.

  11. #10
    Senior Member Beastly's Avatar
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    Re: Audi MY2014 R8 Introduction Event at Sonoma Raceway in California in April!

    Great write up SS! What a fantastic event.
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