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The D2 Audi S8 is one of the very rare models from the company that not only excites fans within the marque, but indeed automotive enthusiasts in general. That’s pretty strange for a sedan that most non-enthusiasts would probably not give a second thought to; it’s not a rakish coupe, it doesn’t have a million horsepower, and it doesn’t even have very modern tech. But thanks to a very notable movie appearance and its understated good looks as well as solid performance, the S8 is still a car that draws universal praise.
Some 20 years old now, these models are on the verge of being considered “antique” in many states. Yet they still look pretty modern, the clean design hiding its age well – especially considering that at in eight months it will be 30 years since the ASF hit the show circuit. Let’s take a look at this Brilliant Black ’02 up for sale in Florida.
Back in October, I took a look at a refreshed and S8-tributed D2 A8L.
2003 Audi A8L
Truth told, by love of the D2 focuses mostly on the S8, but I have a weird crush on early models in general. First off there was the wacky 3.7 front-drive model that only lived for two model years and amazingly had less power than the smaller displacement 1990 V8 quattro with the 3.6. It seems as though barely any of those sold new between 1997 and 1999, and it’s hard to believe any survive today. Of course, it was also an early pre-facelift S8 that appeared in Ronin, as well – another reason to love them. Just 2,481 A8s were sold in the US in 1999, broken up between the 3.7 and the model we’re looking at today: and standard A8 4.2 quattro. It is perhaps one of the best examples left in the wild – and it’s just a good reminder of how handsome and understated the original design was.
While they’re no longer the largest, fastest or most luxurious executive sport sedans on the market, the D2 Audi A8/S8 does still offer enthusiasts a substantial package for a very unsubstantial amount of money. While I’ve spent a lot of time previously covering my favorite S8 models, the normal A8 and stretched A8L tone down the sport but also come to the market at an even more budget-friendly price. To maximize your value, look towards the A8L models. These were expensive sedans back in the early 2000s, though today’s prices really dwarf the MSRP of $67,200 for the lang model. Still, corrected for inflation that is about $100k in buying power today – far from a pittance.
This all brings us to today’s A8L. Let’s say you really wanted one, but you didn’t want anything wrong with it. Well, that’s apparently what happened with this particular example; 2Bennett Audimotive gave it a more-or-less ‘open checkbook’ mechanical overhaul to the tune of $40k, replete with a few S8 modifications. Impressive? Not as impressive as the asking price today, so put the coffee down.
For the US market, the last of the D2 Audi S8s were brought here as Audi Exclusive packages; 100 each of three color combinations, with one new color of Avus Silver Pearl Effect over burgundy leather and revised ‘Celebration’ wheels. For the European market, though, the last S8s got a different Audi Exclusive package. Dubbed the ‘Final Edition’, the car came with 20″ high-polish ‘Celebration’ wheels, Bose audio with a six-disc changer, bi-xenon headlights, an extended leather interior, and dark myrtle wood trim. Four colors were offered with four total interiors; Avus Silver Pearl Effect over either Brilliant Red or Mauve leather, Misano Red over Silver Grey leather, Aqua Blue over Morning Dew leather, or Ebony Black over Brilliant Red or Silver Gray leather. What we see here is the latter of those; a lower-mileage Final Edition in Ebony Black Pearl Effect over Silver Gray leather. It might not be the highest-spec car out there, but boy are these Final Editions impressive-looking!