Recently a friend and I were in Las Vegas for VMworld 2011 and spent the Sunday prior to the show up at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway where we drove the 4.2L V8 Audi R8 through Las Vegas Exotics Racing. Both of us have had a fascination with this car for a while now. I did 10 laps in the R8 and he did 5.
Unlike a lot of cars of its caliber, the R8 was a comfortable fit for me. I am 6’2″ with a broad frame. The R8 is a little too tight for me to wear a helmet comfortably, but seat height, dash distance, seat width, and gauge visibility were all excellent for my body size. We were on a pretty technical track with 9 turns and the R8 handles it well. The racing instructors are pretty intense on helping the driver get more out of the car (“you can take this turn faster”). No surprise that the car handles well—the steering is very tight, braking and acceleration are wonderful, and the sound of the engine is excellent. This is the first car I’ve driven with a mid-mount engine so the weight balance difference was new to me. Certainly 10 laps isn’t enough to really comment on anything in detail.
I highly recommend the Las Vegas Exotics Racing guys. You really do get to drive the cars and it’s worth the price. I am planning to go back in a few weeks to drive the R8 again (SFO to LAS is a quick day trip). They also have a bunch of other high end cars—the R8 is at the bottom of their car line-up but it is the most interesting to me.
About to pull onto the track.
Yours truly at the wheel.
My buddy bringing the car back after his laps.
One of at least 3 Lamborghinis available.
Two of at least 4 Ferraris available.