Audi A8: Welcome to Parkers

  • Audi’s swish limo saloon joins Parkers long term fleet
  • Absolutely loaded with clever tech and kit including TV and fridge
  • Big V8 diesel is more muscular than Conan the Barbarian and far more refined

With a wave goodbye to Audi’s A6, it is also a wave hello to its bigger brother the A8.

The German’s ultimate large saloon, the A8 is bristling with kit and dripping with premium touches. It is as much at home pounding the motorways of Britain as it is sweeping VIP guests to the doors of five-star hotels.

Our version is the ultimate diesel; under the bonnet is a huge V8 with so much pulling power that even a Massey Ferguson would flinch from challenging it to a tug of war. Overtaking has never been so easy.

Yet despite this tremendous driving performance this luxury saloon appeals more to rear seat passengers, even if it’s not the longer wheelbase version.

There are two sumptuous leather lined seats akin to those recliners found in first class on a British Airways flight, whole the rear windows have optional tinted privacy glass and electric screens which quickly whirr into place. Under feet are thick carpets to ensure a fully relaxed position.

Lower the rear arm rest and there is a phalanx of controls to either heat or cool yourself (this version comes with four-zone climate control) and to select your own entertainment on the rear screens with TV or DVD output. Audi’s Bluetooth headphones mean front seat occupants don’t have to listen to the same.

Our car comes with a fridge mounted between the rear seats so champagne and canapés are only a hand stretch away; clearly a saloon that is trying to put the luxury back into motoring. It’s not hard to envisage A-list celebs being swept down the Promenade de la Croisette in Cannes in one of these.

But is this the most stylish way to travel on four-wheels? Are you going to need pockets as deep as the car’s carpets to run such a mode of transport? Will it prove properly useful to the team when it comes to the more mundane, or just ludicrously luxurious?

We’ll find out the answers to these questions and more as the Audi A8 undergoes its long term test with the team.

Miles: 1,645

MPG: 31.2 (indicated)