The film Iron Man is what inspired Chase Zimmerman to purchase his first Audi R8. And his second Audi R8. “The movie was the first time I’d seen an R8,” Zimmerman, who lives in Boca Raton, FL tells us. “After doing some research and reading some reviews, I knew this was a car I needed to own.” His first was the 4.2L V8 and he recently upgraded to the 5.2L V10, noting that “it always puts a smile on my face. It’s a way for me to escape and enjoy myself.” Zimmerman chats with us about how he’s emboldened his R8, what he loves about it and why you should opt for a manual instead of the R-Tronic transmission.
BoldRide: What have you done to make your R8 a bolder ride?
Zimmerman: I added a 3M clear bra on the full hood, front bumper, front fenders, headlights, mirrors and side blades, installed a Carbonio carbon fiber air intake, added MAcarbon carbon fiber shift knob, ashtray lid, radio surround and handbrake lever, wrapped the steering wheel in alcantra, painted all the emblems, badges and engine vents (on the side of the glass to view the motor) gloss black, powder coated the exhaust tips gloss black, coated the engine screen and brake calipers with hi-temperature paint in Scuderia Red, added a Quicksilver Titanium exhaust system, and lowered the ride on 20” AVUS Racing DTM Wheels – 1 of 5 sets in the world – and wrapped the rims in Michelin PS2 tires.
What do you love about your car?
I love the fact that it’s an Audi Exclusive R8. That means that all the pieces in the car that are normally plastic are wrapped in alcantara or leather and that it has some other special upgrades only available to Audi Exclusive vehicles.
What’s an inside fact about an R8 that only an owner would know about?
Not many people know how to open the engine compartment. [Laughs] It took me quite a while to find the release button, which is hidden behind the driver’s seatbelt. Oh, and the R-Tronic transmission sucks, which is why I opted for a 6-speed manual. If you’re in the market for an R8, don’t buy R-Tronic!
What’s your best memory of your R8?
With the V8, it was some track experiences that are among my favorites. I participated with Chin Motorsports and raced at Sebring with the Tampa Automotive Club, a car club I founded. With the new V10, I would probably say the day it arrived and was unloaded off the truck. It was an amazing feeling.
What’s your favorite place to drive it?
The Crosstown Expressway in the express lanes. Let’s just say it is usually a wide-open road. But I’ve always wanted to drive my car on the Autobahn and reach insane speeds.
Is there any dream accessory you’d love to get for it?
An Underground Racing or Heffner Twin-Turbo system. However, that addition isn’t really practical. The R8 is my daily driver so having 1,000-plus horsepower wouldn’t really make sense. I’d probably get into a lot of trouble.
Model: R8 5.2
Price (base when new): $180,000
Estimated Price (now with modifications): $200,000
Engine: 5.2L V10
Horsepower: 525 hp
Torque: 391 lb-ft
Car Type: Coupe, Sports Car
Overall length: 4435 mm
Wheelbase: 2652 mm
Height: 1252 mm
Width: 1930 mm
Curb weight: 3571 lbs.
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