R8R was rolled out to the press in 1998. The car was very conventional in
with the front mounted water cooler, flank located NACA ducts for
top side pod surface located NACA ducts for the turbo intake, short
tail, and single element Le Mans configuration rear wing.
initially appeared the show car had some style elements not meant for
actual race car, notably the four sets of exhaust pipes and the lack of
a rear diffuser. Overall the car looked "pretty", but not all
functional and certainly not ground breaking, even for '99. Indeed, then-Audi stylists Luc Donckerwolke and Roland Heiler had a rather prominent hand in the car's exterior design.
early version did take on the bulk of the initial testing proving the
componentry as well as being a working test bed for further
of the R8R series.