Audi A8 2.8 Sport Multitronic - Comfort

By Riyad Emeran



There's no doubt that comfort was high on the list of priorities when Audi was developing the A8, and I have to say that it has done a pretty good job in this department. If you need to arrive at your destination feeling your best, no matter how far away it may be, the A8 makes a very good case for itself.

The cabin is huge and there's no shortage of leg room in the front and rear. Add to this a pair of excellent front seats that manage to be both comfortable and supportive, even after hours behind the wheel. The seats are, of course, electrically adjustable in pretty much every possible way, including lumbar support. You can also record up to four seat positions, so if different people use the car they can simply press the button that corresponds to them and instantly have the perfect driving position.

There's full electric seat adjustment, and up to four memory slots for the driver's seat

The seats are heated too, with five levels to choose from. This isn't obvious at first though, since the heated seat controls initially appear to be a simple on/off button. However, once you press this button the display for the level of heating is overlaid on the main screen. You can then use the climate control dials to adjust the level of seat heating.

Obviously you get climate control, and it comes as no surprise that the driver and front passenger can adjust temperatures independently for their zones. But the A8 goes one better than that by offering four-zone climate control, where the two rear passengers can set independent temperatures too, ensuring that everyone in the car is comfortable.

There's dual zone climate control for front and rear occupants

The steering wheel has a good feel to it, and it's not too big either considering the size of the car. The steering wheel also has controls for most of the MMI functions, and it's surprisingly easy to use even when driving. On the left is a dial that mimics the main MMI dial along with a Mode button. The Mode button will switch between Navigation, Music and Phone functionality, while all your options are shown in the large colour in-dash display. On the right is another dial for volume and the Voice Command button.

What's nice about the controls on the A8's steering wheel is that they give you more control than a simple button arrangement. While many systems just allow you to skip backwards and forwards through your music, on the A8 you can call up the music display, move the cursor up or down to the particular track you want to listen to and select it. I know that many multi-function steering wheels use a similar method, but it's good to see here nonetheless.

One touch that I really liked was the fact that the owner's manuals for both the car and the infotainment system are present in the MMI itself. So if you wanted to find out how to do something and didn't have the paper handbook in the car, you can call it up on the screen and find out what you need to know.

All the car's handbooks are loaded onto the MMI system


April 14, 2009, 5:37 am

Of everything I've ready about in TR over the last 5 years this has to come top of my most wanted list. I'd rather have the 4.0 TDI though.


April 14, 2009, 6:33 am

If anyone reading this is actually going to buy this car... can you just give me the 㿏,000 which you'll lose in 1st year depreciation..? and I'll treat you exactly like an audi driver as you go past in a Mondeo. You won't know the difference, I swear. Tell you what, credit crunch.. I'll do you the same deal for 30K, I can't say fairer than that.


April 14, 2009, 6:42 am

we had to install a high gain antenna on the roof, mounted on a pole just to get Freeview reception. Despite this, the A8 managed to pickup Freeview stations flawlessly while sitting in the car park.

Hmmm, guys, maybe you should look for a better antenna and installer if a car can do it better!


April 14, 2009, 7:00 am

@ravmania - I think I'd go for the V10 S8 if had to have an A8. Although in reality it's an RS4 that I'm after.

@Chocoa - As for reception, there is a gargantuan tree directly between the office and the nearest transmitter, so I'm assuming there is better line of sight from the car park. The reception from the Audi's TV tuner was impressive nonetheless.

Robert Elliot

April 14, 2009, 2:16 pm

You don't mention whether it has A2DP? That's my preferred method for playing music in the car - keep it on my phone.


April 16, 2009, 7:58 pm

@Robert Elliot - I couldn't find an A2DP option on the A8, but there was so much to wade through that I could have missed it. That said, with so many source options already at your disposal, A2DP may have appeared superfluous.

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