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This is my first post here, so a bit of background on me may be needed. I've raced cars for a few years, and am currently running my Elise in the superb http://www.elisetrophy.com/ here in the UK, which is setup and run by friends of mine. I have had two Boxsters (since 2003), and think the 987S is the greatest sportscar built. I've driven countless 911's (from 964's on) on road and track (including lots of time in 993 RS's and 997 GT3's), but just don't gel with the rear-engined thang - it's a pure anachronism to me, and increasingly looking vulnerable, if brilliant in execution. If Porsche sold the Cayman with the GT3's engine I'd probably be first in the queue. So I was kinda stuck... albeit with a brilliant, and relatively cheap, car.

When I first saw the R8 I was suspicious that Audi would get it right. When the I first saw the glowing reviews I thought that was typical (and occasionally corrupt) journo hyperbole. Given that Porsche now effectively controls VAG I also thought they would not allow the 911 to be challenged... I supposed I shouldn't have been surprised given the Gallardo has been winning plaudits for years and it's effectively a Lambo badged R8 (or R10 to be picky).

But the R8 kept getting glowing reviews, and from writers/drivers that I respect. So, given the supposed 18 month waiting list in the UK, I decided to put a deposit down on an R8 (and an R10) a month ago to cover my options. I figure that after 6 years with Boxsters, I might be in the mood for a change by mid 2009.

Anyway last week I was offered a test drive. I hated the R-Tronic (would always have manual anyway), thought the brakes were a little over-servoed (though had enough feel), and that the steering feel was not quite up to Porsche (let alone Lotus) standards. On magneto dampers I thought the ride was good with excellent body control. The chassis is clearly extremely rigid... and the grip levels are phenomenal... I'd love to get one on track, and can well believe the times that some have posted in tests. The engine's power delivery was near perfect, and it is more than quick enough for the road in my opinion.

In many ways it reminds me of the first time I drove a Boxster. It is not a car to completely blow your breath away first time (despite the outlandish looks). But it is one that will, over time, seduce you with the way it can do everything so accessibly, putting the driver in charge at all times. I assume/hope it is as adjustable on the limit as those that have had the opportunity to drive it there say. I often drive long miles to circuits (eg Dijon Prenois), throw the car around a bit, and then drive home. I can imagine the R8 doing that thrillingly.

So that's where I'm at. My first impressions of the car were good... I'm 99% sure it has exceptional potential for an owner to unlock. I think the R8 will probably be more than enough for the road, and won't "need" the R10. And my deposit is 1 month old.

I look forward to reading more of other people's experiences of the car on here :)
 

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James,
Welcome on R8talk!

Honest report. Your opinion about R8 almost mirrors mine-it is truly excellent drivers car(although not the fastest sports car). I also owned 987S and I fully agree with you.
 

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Hi James

Didn't know you were getting one too! Mine's due March 1st, maybe see you at a LoT race sometime.

AndyW
 
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