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Faster than A Corvette Z06? - A Closer Look

"its test-track acceleration numbers would match the Porsche Panamera Turbo and embarrass a Chevrolet Corvette Z06 owner." That's what Motor Trend had to say about the 2013 Audi S8 after a test. Let's get the facts out of the way first: the Audi S8 is fast.. very fast, especially for a 4,600+ lb sedan.

According to their test, it gets from 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds and finishes a 1/4 mile in a mere 11.8 seconds @ 118.3 mph. That's impressive. Apparently, though, it's not impressive enough to attract readers so something extra had to be said. Track test acceleration numbers would embarrass a Chevrolet Z06 owner? How? I looked up Z06 acceleration numbers.. from Motor Trend tests. I found 5 different tests and all of them pull a 0-60 mph in a consistent 3.8 seconds, except for the Z06 with the Z07 package which does it in 3.7 seconds. 1/4 mile? 2 tests are at 11.6 seconds, 1 test is at 11.7, 1 is at 11.8 and another at 11.9. So out of 5 tests, the Corvette was quicker in 3 tests, tied the Audi in 1 test and was slower by only 1 tenth in one of the tests.

Needless to say, the Corvette has a trap speed that's far higher, anywhere between ~ 122.5 - 126.6 mph.. at 1/4 mile, the Corvette would be flying past the Audi. The one (and only) metric where the Audi clearly excels at is the 0-60 time and by only 3 tenths. I'm not going to get into handling because it was not brought up and only a fool would compare the handling of an Audi S8 to a Corvette Z06. When evaluating a car's straight line performance, whether you're road racing or drag racing, 0-60 times tell you very little. 1/4 mile acceleration metrics give a much better picture.

That's besides the point, though, because Motor Trend editors know that. They know the complete picture and I'm sure (at least I hope) they remember that the Corvette only loses from 0-60 because of the AWD launch advantage but it's a different story at the 1/4 mile. What they're probably trying to do is write stuff that gets people arguing, commenting and coming back to the site. This does bother me a little but it doesn't really get on my nerves. What does get on my nerves is what ends up happening: creating tools.

One of the comments was by a guy saying that (and I'm paraphrasing) his grandma could drive this car with grandchildren in the back and a trunk full of groceries and beat the Corvette Z06 at a traffic light. No.. I don't encourage street racing but a Corvette Z06 would most likely live it in the dust. You see, in order to get that perfect 0-60 time, you have to rev the engine up to the optimum rpm, hold the revs up high (making yourself look like a fool if you're at a traffic light) and lift off the brakes right away. This guy took "embarrass a Chevrolet Corvette Z06 owner" to mean that an Audi S8 is a lot faster, period, regardless of:
1- having an extra couple hundred pounds worth of groceries and kids in the back
2- a street start that gives up most of the AWD launch advantage
3- the possibility that you don't know the best launch rpm because most people don't time and practise their 0-60 launches
4- whether or not the race continues after 60 mph

I usually just laugh when I look back at running into tools like that and arguing with them but while I'm arguing, it's VERY annoying and stuff like that make running into those people a much more frequent occurrence. This is why pulling stuff like that off in car reviews gets on my nerves; it plays a huge rule in increasing the number of tools.. the same way The Fast and The Furious caused a large boost in the number of tools and ricers on the road, except this huge exaggeration is even worse in a way.. it is coming from a much more legit source/influence: an instrumental car test and review.

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