Well I finally pulled the trigger and got rid of the 2009 S8 and got a 2011 A8L.
I really enjoyed the 3 years in the S8 but decided I was ready for something different. The car I got was a lease return delivered toward the end of 2011 so I have almost 2 years of the factory warranty plus two more for the CPO warranty. The new car had 15,000 miles, emerald black metallic, nougat brown interior, B&O stereo system, rear seat comfort package (4 zone HVAC, reclining seats), driver assistance package, premium package, night vision assistant, full LED headlights, cold weather package and dual pane glass. It it pretty loaded and the only option I would have liked to have is the 20" wheels.
I have had it for a couple weeks now and here are my observations.
Surprisingly the difference in acceleration is not that noticeable but the suspension / larger size is. The dynamic mode on the A8L is about the same as the comfort mode on the old S8.
The seats in the S8 were a bit more comfortable except the massage and vented cooling is very nice.
The electronics are a huge step up from the D3, pretty much every system.
Stereo is better sounding with better features like Bluetooth streaming, hard disk drive and single cd slot in the dash.
Navigation is also a huge improvement with traffic, easy map scrolling and best of all voice recognition to input destination addresses.
The cruise control in the new model is so nice with real stop and go and it has never had an issue with "ACC Blocked" which I got frequently with the D3 S8 and would then have to wait a couple minutes just to use cruise control.
Other items of note that I really like are the room in the back.
Power rear side sun shades.
Nice console for the rear seat HVAC controls.
Better cup holders both front and rear.
Cool clock in the dash.
Much better transmission and much better fuel economy. I drove from San Jose to San Francisco this week with cruise set to 72 with some stop and go traffic and averaged 32mpg according to the computer.
VAG-COM programming is much more straight forward on the D4.
Things I miss about the S8.
I still like the D3 body better.
Like the B&O speakers on the rear shelf better.
Miss the full leather interior of the S8, leather simply everywhere.
Miss the carbon fiber ascents in the interior.
Miss the handling but in reality that was probably less than 5% of the time I drove the car.
Biggest thing I miss is the cool factor of the car, would get a thumbs up pretty evey time I drove the car.
I am really happy overall with the change. Waxed the car over the weekend and didn't even find one scratch on the car.
Last edited by kgd_007; 04-22-2014 at 08:45 PM.
Reason: Submitted in error