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Take a closer look at that late-model Audi A8 rounding the N rburgring. According to spies, it's no run-of-the-mill showroom queen that's been through a round of stunt driving a la "The Transporter." It's a test mule of the next-generation A8, which will likely debut in 2009 as a 2010 model. The company's five-year plan appears to include going after the upcoming Porsche Panamera luxury four-door โ€” said to be debuting in the same model year โ€” and the next BMW 7-Series with a brand new V12 CDI and an updated V10 gas engine. The Car Connection offers a spec illustration of what such a beast might look like in the flesh.

Spy Shots: 2010 Audi A8 [The Car Connection]

Related:
Oops, I Coulda Had a V10: Audi's S8 Sedan Launched [internal]