Multimedia on wheels: Rear Seat Entertainment RSE

Travelling in the rear of the Audi A8 promises to be an even more relaxing affair in future. The Rear Seat Entertainment (RSE) package combines two 6.5" LCD monitors in the head restraints of the driver's and front passenger's seats, and a DVD/CD player in the rear bench seat. The sound is transmitted via the car's radio system. This deluxe saloon car can thus be transformed into a mobile multimedia centre supplying information and entertainment, and even allowing the rear occupants to watch a film while on the move.

The RSE console at the centre of the rear seat houses the controls for the system, together with those for the car's navigation system. Separate AV inputs for each monitor mean that a wide range of picture sources can be used, such as a video camera, playstation and the TV receiver of the navigation system Plus. Two headphone outputs and separate sets of controls mean that the individual RSE units can be operated independently of each other.

The driver, too, can benefit from all those features that are designed to make being at the steering wheel as comfortable and safe as possible. The standard navigation system Plus helps him to reach his destination without going out of his way and by taking the best route possible. Audi telematics, a new kind of service and information system, is available as an option. With the information this system provides on the current traffic situation, the navigation system can be upgraded to include dynamic route guidance: this is the perfect opportunity for all frequent drivers to avoid tailbacks, yet complete their journey without making unnecessary detours.

Audi has of course also placed considerable emphasis on the safety of this superlative vehicle. As well as front and side airbags for the driver and front passenger, the car also has side airbags for the outer rear passengers. The occupants are moreover protected additionally by the head-airbag system SIDEGUARD, which covers almost the entire side window area, from the A-post to the C-post.

A tyre-pressure monitoring system checks the air pressure in the tyres while the car is moving. And the Electronic Stability Program ESP helps the driver to remain safely in command of critical handling situations by means of controlled brake and engine management intervention. Active safety is further optimised by standard-fit xenon plus headlights for low and high beam. There is no doubt this system currently offers the greatest and most even light output.

70 years ago, in the autumn of 1931, Horch presented one of the world's first twelve-cylinder production engines: a milestone in German automotive history. The traditional company Horch, one of the precursors of the Audi brand, fitted the Type 670 Cabriolet with a V12 engine which - like the new W12 - had a capacity of six litres.

There's no doubt that the new Audi flagship is also a milestone in the luxury class. A vehicle for very discerning customers who look for nothing less than technical innovation, comfort and convenience of the very highest calibre. We have the very thing for them: the fascination of the largest, most powerful twelve-cylinder engine in a saloon, combined with quattro four-wheel drive and the systematic lightweight design of the Audi Space Frame ASF. The Audi A8 L 6.0 quattro.

The market

The target group for twelve-cylinder cars is understandably one characterised by out-and-out exclusivity. 6,000 new cars with twelve-cylinder engines are sold each year worldwide. Apart from the Italian manufacturers of high-end sports cars, such as the Lamborghini Diablo, this market is dominated almost entirely by German premium manufacturers and their luxury limousines.

The new Audi A8 6.0L now takes up its position among the leading members of this exclusive club. Its performance, displacement and the combination with quattro four-wheel drive single it out as a unique product in a unique market. Current production plans envisage an initial volume of around 500 vehicles. Most of this contingent will be destined for the German market.

The prospective buyers of the new A8 6.0L are people who have a strong affinity with fascinating technology and therefore with the unequalled performance of this car. They are people who feel at home in the upper luxury vehicle category; many of them may already have previously driven an A8 - or been chauffeured around as a rear passenger in the deluxe long-wheelbase version.

These highly discerning customers are predominantly male and aged around 50. They are generally self-employed and educated to a high level. These are people who cover considerable distances in their car and who therefore appreciate the particular blend of luxury, driving refinement and the incomparable power of the twelve-cylinder A8. However, the combination of representative appeal and restrained elegance that distinguishes their car is equally important to them.

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