Stripped bare of the electrical and mechanical components, the 2018 Audi A8 in this cutaway shows the naked wiring harness. While it might not help you fix an A8, it gives the general public an idea of just how sophisticated the modern vehicle has become.
Even the professional technician may be amazed at what’s hidden. The A8 has five vehicle networks, including high-speed CAN and Flex-Ray. There are also two power systems, conventional 12-volt and 48-volt.
The 2018 Audi A8 is a mild-hybrid technology vehicle, with a belt alternator starter (BAS) and a lithium-ion battery with 10 Ah electrical capacity. It can coast at speeds between 55 and 99 mph with the engine off for up to 40 seconds. The 48-volt system allows a high recuperation power of up to 12 kW plus start-stop operation from 13.7 mph.
Audi claims the A8 comes with more than 40 driver assistance systems and 21 ADAS sensors. It is a Level 3 ADAS vehicle with the ability to control the steering and follow along during a traffic jam. The range of items includes backup sensors in the rear bumper to forward radar in the front bumper. It also has a laser next to the camera to measure the size and distance of objects. Both the cameras, laser and radar require calibration if the sensors are replaced or moved. The Audi has four-wheel steering in the front and rear, a system that improves handling and low-speed maneuverability.
While the A8 is one of the most complicated vehicles on the road, it is also an indication of where most cars are going in the future.