2020 Audi R8 vs. 2019 McLaren 720S

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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The R8 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The 720S doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The R8 has standard Audi Connect CARE, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The 720S doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the R8 and the 720S have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head 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 720S’ 3-year basic warranty expires 1 year sooner.

The R8’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the 720S’ (12 vs. 10 years).

There are almost 16 times as many Audi dealers as there are McLaren dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the R8’s warranty.

Fuel Economy and Range

The R8’s standard fuel tank has 2.9 gallons more fuel capacity than the 720S (21.9 vs. 19 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 McLaren 720S is not available with all wheel drive.

Tires and Wheels

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 720S’ 35 series front tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the R8 offers optional 20-inch wheels. The 720S’ largest wheels are only 19-inches in the front and 20-inches in the rear.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the R8’s turning circle is 3.3 feet tighter than the 720S’ (36.7 feet vs. 40 feet).


The R8 is 4.5 inches shorter than the 720S, making the R8 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.


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 720S can’t use the remote to operate the windows.

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 720S doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

The R8’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The 720S’ power mirror controls are on the dash where they are possibly hidden by the steering wheel and are awkward to manipulate.

The R8 has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The 720S has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

To help keep the driver’s hands on the wheel, the R8 has standard steering wheel controls for the radio. The 720S doesn’t offer steering wheel audio controls.

With standard voice command, the R8 offers the driver hands free control of the radio and the navigation computer by simply speaking. The 720S doesn’t offer a voice control system.


The Audi R8 outsold the McLaren 720S by 19% during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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