Yes, the rumours were true. Audi Sport has indeed built a rear-wheel-drive version of its R8, revealing the limited edition model at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

Limited to just 999 units worldwide, the newcomer will be offered in two forms: the R8 V10 RWS and the R8 Spyder V10 RWS. For the record, that three-letter suffix stands for “Rear Wheel Series”.

The Ingolstadt automaker has opted to stick with its silky smooth, naturally aspirated 5,2-litre mid-mounted V10, which produces a familiar 397 kW and 540 N.m in RWS guise (leaving the 449 kW V10 Plus coupé at the very summit of the range). That translates to claimed 0-100 km/h times of 3,7 seconds for the coupé and 3,8 seconds for the soft-top. Top speeds, meanwhile, come in at 319 km/h and 317 km/h, respectively.

Audi says the new model’s “specially tuned chassis setup” allows for “controlled drifts”. In addition, without the added weight of an all-wheel-drive system, the coupé tips the scales at 1 590 kg, which is about 50 kg less than the four-paw version. The Spyder V10 RWS, in turn, is around 40 kg lighter than the Spyder V10, weighing in at 1 680 kg. The Audi R8 V10 RWS is fitted as standard with five-spoke, 19-inch black alloys, with 245/35 tyres up front and 295/35 at the rear.

“The R8 V10 RWS is made for purists,” said Stephan Winkelmann, outgoing CEO of Audi Sport. “A limited-edition special model for customers with an appreciation for essential driving enjoyment, the R8 V10 RWS is an absolutely exclusive offer. With its mid-mounted V10 engine and rear-wheel drive, it successfully brings the driving concept of our R8 LMS racing car to the streets.”

This limited edition variant is visually set apart by matt black treatment for the grille and air apertures at the front and rear of the car. The upper sideblade of the coupé, meanwhile, is finished in gloss black, with the lower blade in the body colour.

The coupé version is furthermore available with an optional red film running over the bonnet, roof and rear end. Inside, the driver and passenger sit in sport seats covered in leather and Alcantara, although bucket seats will be offered as an option.

No word yet on whether any of the 999 units are destined for South Africa.

Original article from Car