Laser headlights? Can I use them to zap traffic wardens?
No such luck – these aren't James Bond-style death rays, they're Audi's new Laserlight headlights. Previously seen on the Audi R18 e-tron and the Sport Quattro Laserlight concept car at CES, they're making their debut on a production car. A very exclusive car, in fact; the Audi R8 LMX. Audi's Laserlight headlights combine blue laser beams run through a phosphor converter with matrix LEDs to illuminate the road up to 500m ahead of the car – delivering twice the luminosity of standard LED headlights.
Hold on, won't that blind drivers coming towards you?
Nope – Audi's kitted out the R8 LMX with an "intelligent camera-based sensor system" that detects other road users and adjusts the light pattern to avoid them.
More after the break...
Nice. What about the rest of the car? Is it just an ordinary R8 with laser headlights?
Leaving aside the fact that you can hardly call Audi's flagship supercar "ordinary," the LMX has had a power boost over the standard R8. The V10 engine's output has been bumped up to 562bhp – 20 more horses than the standard R8 V10. It'll get you from 0-62mph acceleration in 3.4 seconds and has a top speed of 198mph; that's 0.1 seconds and 1mph faster than the R8.
Does it come in black?
No, Bruce Wayne, it doesn't. You can have any colour as long as it's blue – the Ara Blue paint scheme shown above, in fact. You also get carbon fibre detailing, exclusive wheels with red brake calipers and a black Nappa interior with blue stitching. What you don't get is the luxury of choice, which is surprising, considering the car's €210,000 (S$361,919) base price. There are only 99 of the cars being made, though, so you'd better get a move on.
But I want lasers on my car!
Well, Audi's not the only manufacturer kitting out its cars with laser headlights; the equally expensive BMW i8 will also feature laser lights as an option. Take your pick.
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