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The R8 has standard front seat side-impact airbags and head airbags, which act as a forgiving barrier between the passengers and the door. Combined with high-strength steel door beams this system increases protection from broadside collisions. The GT doesn't offer side-impact airbags or side airbag protection for the head.
The R8 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The GT doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.
Both the R8 and the GT have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
The R8 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The GT’s 3-year basic warranty expires 1 year sooner.
The R8’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the GT’s (12 vs. 5 years).
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 11 places higher in reliability than Ford.
On the EPA test cycle the R8 V10 gets better fuel mileage than the GT (13 city/20 hwy vs. 11 city/18 hwy).
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the R8’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The GT doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The R8 V10 Performance’s standard fuel tank has 4.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the GT (19.3 vs. 15.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The R8’s standard fuel tank has 6.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the GT (21.9 vs. 15.2 gallons).
All wheel drive, available in the R8, provides the best traction for acceleration in wet, dry, and icy conditions. In corners, all wheel drive allows both outside wheels to provide power, balancing the car. This allows for better handling. The Ford GT is not available with all wheel drive.
The R8’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 30 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the GT’s 35 series front tires.
The front and rear suspension of the R8 uses coil springs for better ride, handling and control than the GT, which uses torsion bars in the rear. Coil springs compress more progressively and offer more suspension travel for a smoother ride with less bottoming out.
The R8 has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The GT doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
For better maneuverability, the R8’s turning circle is 3.3 feet tighter than the GT’s (36.7 feet vs. 40 feet).
The R8 is 1 foot, 1.1 inches shorter than the GT, making the R8 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
The R8 has 7 cubic feet more passenger volume than the GT (50 vs. 43).
The R8 has 2.8 inches more front headroom and 6.4 inches more front shoulder room than the GT.
The R8 Coupe has a much larger trunk than the GT (4 vs. 0.4 cubic feet).
A standard locking glovebox keeps your small valuables safer in the R8. The GT doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.
The R8 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The GT uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
A Service Indicator is standard on the R8 to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes based on odometer mileage. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Ford doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the GT.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Ford. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 46% lower rating, Ford is ranked 24th.
When different drivers share the R8, the memory system makes it convenient. Each keyless remote activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and climate settings. The GT doesn’t offer a memory system.
If the windows are left open on the R8 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the GT can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The R8’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The GT’s intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the R8 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The GT doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
When the R8 is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The GT’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.
The R8’s standard rear and side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The GT doesn’t offer the luxury of automatic dimming mirrors.
The R8 has standard heated front seats, which keep the driver and front passenger extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated seats aren’t available in the GT.
The R8’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The GT doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
The Audi R8 comes in coupe and convertible bodystyles; the Ford GT isn’t available as a convertible.
The Audi R8 outsold the Ford GT by over seven to one during 2018.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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