Audi is ready to introduce a diesel version of its A8 flagship in the U.S., and the car's fuel-economy ratings clearly show the benefits of Audi's TDI technology. The 2014 Audi A8L TDI is rated at 24/36 mpg (city/highway), and goes on sale this spring from $83,395, after an $895 destination charge.
Audi announced last fall that it would add diesel powertrains to four new models in the U.S., the A6, A7, A8, and Q5. All of those use the company's 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6, which in the case of the A8L is rated for 240 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque. The new engine makes the TDI model the most efficient long-wheelbase Audi A8 by a long shot: the thriftiest gasoline version, the A8L 3.0T (pictured), manages just 18/28 mpg.
Switching to diesel power doesn't dramatically compromise performance, either, as Audi says the A8L TDI will dash to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds. That makes it the slowest U.S.-market A8, but it's still respectable for a luxury car that measures 207.4 inches long and weighs around 4500 pounds.
Based on its expectations for customer demand, Audi will only offer the diesel A8 in "L" long-wheelbase configuration, and also has slightly adjusted the car's options packages. The new premium package, for instance, bundles parking sensors, 22-way power seats, cooled front seats with massage feature, and full-LED headlights.
The 2014 Audi A8L TDI goes on sale this spring. Pricing and fuel economy for diesel version of the A6, A7, and Q5 will be announced at a later date.