Audi is still staying pretty mum on the full raft of updates for the 2013 A8, but we now know just how much the A8's newest engine will cost. The new base 3.0-liter supercharged V-6 engine for the 2013 Audi A8 will start at $73,095, including destination.
If that 3.0-liter sounds familiar to you, it's because it should. It's the same engine found under the hood of almost every other car in Audi's lineup – S4, S5, A6, A7, Q5, and Q7; only the A3, A4, A5, and R8 do without the supercharged six-cylinder. As in the other models, the V-6 will produce 333 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque in the A8 3.0T (the "T" is being used to denote any kind of forced induction, be it turbo- or supercharging) and will be paired with Audi's ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic and Quattro all-wheel drive. The current A8 4.2 uses a 4.2-liter V-8 engine rated at 372 hp and 328 lb-ft.
Compared to the current price of entry for the A8, the new 3.0T model will come in $6530 cheaper than the 2012 A8 4.2. The A8 3.0T will also be offered in long-wheelbase form, which will retail starting at $79,395. The supercharged V-6 will slot in to replace the naturally-aspirated 4.2-liter V-8 in the A8 in a similar fashion that it did in the S4 sport sedan and S5 coupe, so the 4.2-liter V-8 will be replaced more directly with a version of the 4.0-liter V-8 found in the S8. The twin-turbo V-8 in the high-performance S8 makes 520 hp and 479 lb-ft.
BMW and Mercedes-Benz both offer six-cylinder variants in their flagships as well. BMW's 740i is powered by a 315-hp turbocharged I-6 and starts at $71,895 for the standard wheelbase or $76,395 for the long-wheelbase 740Li. While Mercedes offers two different six-cylinder-powered S-Classes, they both fall under the "alternative powertrain" category: the $93,425 S350 BlueTec 4Matic comes with a 240-hp 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6, and the $92,725 S400 Hybrid uses a 295-hp 3.5-liter V-6 paired to an electric motor.
Audi's range-topping A8 L W12 über sedan will continue on for 2013 with its 6.3-liter W-12 engine, good for 500 hp and 463 lb-ft, and see its price tag drop by a scant $200 to $135,375, with destination. There will also be a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6 option for the A8, coming this fall.
Look for the 2013 A8 3.0T to start arriving at dealers now, with the A8 L W12 showing up later in the summer. (Pictured below is the 3.0T V-6 from the 2012 A6 and the 2012 A8 L W12 model.)