When it comes to a supercar, you really can’t beat a car with lots of cylinders and natural aspiration to stir the soul. That’s what these cars are all about – if it doesn’t make you want to go for a drive just for the hell of it, if it doesn’t make people stare on the high street… there’s very little point. There’s plenty of choice out there in the supercar world – everything from McLarens to upper-tier Porsches and Mercedes to Ferrari. But what would you have; new R8 or used Lambo Murciélago?
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New vs Used: Audi R8 vs Lamborghini Murciélago
You've got £140,000 to spend on a supercar, but where would you put your money?
New Audi R8 V10 Performance – £141,200
Good: Naturally aspirated V10, solid-not-scary handling traits, price, reliability
Bad: One of the subtlest supercars, which is both good and bad
Recently rebranded, refettled and generally sharpened both stylistically and technically, the Audi R8 remains one the greatest underrated supercars in the world. With 564bhp for the ‘standard’ model, up to 613 for the Performance, the R8 is full of 5.2-litre V10 charm. It really is a joy to drive, without the feeling that it’ll a) spit you off into the nearest hard thing, or b) explode at any second. These are good things.
And at £141,200 for that top model, it’s actually a fairly savvy buy for the brilliance. You get calming Audi quality and reliability with mental Lamborghini performance (it shares the V10 with the Huracán). But there is an option with genuine Lamborghini performance, and a bit more psychological and actual physical risk…
Pre-loved Lamborghini Murciélago – £141,000
Good: Double-take maker. Never gets confused with a vanilla model. Oh the noise!
Bad: Will bite your arm off if you don’t know what you’re doing. Or break. Does 14mpg
Brand-new Audi R8 Performance for £140,000, or old-school bruiser in the shape of a used Lamborghini Murciélago? You’ll be giving up one of the most usable day-to-day supercars – a proper option versus a McLaren 570S or Porsche 911 Turbo – for a wide, scary, scissor-doored V12 Lambo. And while the R8 has all the performance you might reasonably need, the LP640 comes with a free upgrade to the ‘proper’ supercar hall of fame, and some robust handling traits. All-wheel drive it may be, particularly forgiving it is not.
We found a few Murcs in budget – including a manual – and even though they’ll cost an arm, leg and at least one kidney to run (two rear tyres are nigh-on a grand by themselves), there are fewer cars that make such an immediate impression. The question remains: would you have the guts to make this choice with your own money?