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SAFETY | 9 out of 10
Like many expensive luxury cars, the Audi A8 hasn't been subjected to crash tests by either the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). We don't expect it will be, either, since it sells few examples each year.
Still, the A8 has the basics for exceptional crash safety, from its aero-inspired construction to its extra airbags at the front passengers' knees, down to standard all-wheel drive and an advanced stability control system. There are ancillary systems programmed into it that mitigate crash severity, too--emergency braking assistance, Pre Sense adjustments for the seats and seatbelts in anticipation of a crash.Parking sensors are also standard on all models, but it's a bit surprising to find that a rearview camera is part of a $3,000 option package on the A8 3.0T. On other versions, a surround-view camera is either available or standard.
The A8's more exotic safety technologies are sold as options bundled in packages. They include adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability in traffic and full brake ability at speeds of under 19 mph; blind-spot monitors; lane-keeping assist; and night vision.
There's no crash-test data, but the A8's aero-like structure and reams of safety technology give it a higher than usual baseline.