Audi has officially published some details about the new A8 as well as some very specific detail about its headlamps. It has stated that the A8 will be on the market by the end of the year and has also released information about its new lighting technology.
The A8 matrix lights have a selection of LED’s inside which are in clusters of 5 with reflectors with five groups in all. This differs from traditional high beams because the array is put together very precisely so that it blanks out the light that shines on to oncoming traffic but still lights up the rest of the road where there are no vehicles. It also has a camera and electronics so that it can automatically dim or turn out lights depending on the traffic situation. The system does not have servo motors like most adaptive headlamps do but they can still predict the roads trajectory because of the inbuilt car GPS system that they are linked up to. It even works with the night vision system that the car has which means that when a pedestrian is spotted the LEDs flash to warn both pedestrian and driver of each other being there.
The unfortunately thing for US customers is that the lights are not legal there yet. This means that they will not be available in US models unless the rules are changed. Audi are campaigning together with other car manufacturers to try to change the rules on this but at the moment they are not allowed. Whether the rules will be changed before the car appears on the market will remain to be seen.
The A8 is expected to make its debut at the September Frankfurt Motor Show and so a first proper glimpse will be able to be taken and more details should be revealed about the car including the funky lights!