Saturday, June 16, 2007

Test Drive I: Audi A8L

I completely forgot to mention the test drive I took last week. So let me fill in the blanks.

Thursday, 7 June, I took some time to meander down to the Audi dealership about 1 mile from my apartment. My reason - to test drive an Audi A8L. Some of you may remember that I rented this same vehicle during one of my last trips to SoCal. I figured this was a good place to start for my test drive project.

So after locating a sales guy, I sat down and ran through the plan. I was coming back the following day, Friday, between 1 and 2 pm EDT to test drive the A8L. He said he'd come in even though it was his off day and make it happen. Sweet!

So the next day, I arrived. I was a bit late - closer to 1:45 pm, but hey, it was still inside the window. I located the sales guy and he had me wait at his desk while he pulled the car around. After giving a little demo of some of the features, I was off. I specifically requested a chance to drive the car alone as opposed to taking the sales guy with me. Having driven the A8L before (and paying for the pleasure), I didn't really see the point.

Now, let me say that, with the exception of the MMI (MultiMedia Interface), nothing about the car let me down. It was superb. Again. Shifting the suspension to dynamic was great for those twisty back roads, where I could open up and really connect with the road. On comfort, it was smooth as silk. I'd have never known I was doing 90 on 95 South unless I looked at the speedometer (which I did eventually). From about 50 - 90 was a blur; not instantaneous, but very snappy. I didn't try out the sport mode (clutchless manual aka paddle shifter) but there will be time for that in the future. Besides, I was looking at this vehicle from a comfort and relaxation perspective. When I get into sporty mode, I'm sure Mercedes and BMW will have appropriate vehicles for me. The A5 and S8 don't debut for many months, unfortunately, so I'll have to come back anyway.

So, that was the story of my first test drive. Next up: BMW 750iL.

Until next time...

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