When Tony Stark rides onto the big screen once more in Marvel's "Iron Man 3" May 3, his armor won't be his only upgrade. Since "Iron Man" in 2008, Tony's driven the newest and most stylish cars from Audi, from the R8 Coupe to the R8 V10 Spyder and, now, the R8 e-tron. Now, to celebrate the upcoming release of "Iron Man 3," look back with us at Tony's most loved cars from "Iron Man" to today!
By Zack Zeigler
|Tony Stark riding in the Audi R8 e-tron in "Iron Man 3"|
Tony Stark’s high-concept, high-tech exoskeleton suits have made major advances in style and function since the debut of the clunky Mark 1 in 2008’s "Iron Man," but we’ll cut Stark some slack since he was forced to slap that first suit together from scrap metal inside of a cave while a group of heavily armed terrorists were breathing down his neck. But the point is his blueprints were brilliant and allowed ample room for improvements for future models.
The evolution of Audi’s new electric-power R8 e-tron--which Tony Stark will captain in "Iron Man 3" when it’s released nationwide this Friday, May 3--has had a similar journey...sans the gun-wielding evildoers, of course. Back in 2009, Audi announced its intention to produce its e-tron models. Their concept to inject their signature luxury brand into an electric vehicle was tantalizing to those who believed in Audi’s ability to push the boundaries of what electric cars were capable of achieving.
|Robert Downey, Jr. on the set of "Iron Man 3" with the Audi R8 e-tron|
Then Marvel Studios and Audi announced that Stark would be behind the wheel of a prototype for the R8 e-tron in "Iron Man 3." Unlike Stark, Audi had the time and technology to take their initial concept and expand upon it during the lull between the drawing board and production line. In fact, Audi plans on releasing the first e-tron vehicles to the public sometime next year.
From the outside, the LED light fixtures, wide grill, tapering windows, and vented hood looks similar to the R8 V10 Spyder Stark drove in "Iron Man 2." Internally, things have changed drastically. The R8 e-tron is believed to come with a 49 KWh lithium-ion battery (which will supply 133 miles per change), a 0 to 60 time of 4.8 seconds with a top speed of 124 mph, and the ability to recharge the battery while coasting and breaking. Details about the cabin and its contents are still hazy, but if you absolutely must know, your best bet is to track Robert Downey, Jr. down at his next red carpet event to ask him what it’s like, since he’s actually driven one.
Audi, clearly Stark’s brand of choice, was also featured in the two previous Iron Man installments, with the first being the R8 in "Iron Man," and the sequel featuring the aforementioned R8 V10 Spyder.
Marvel's "Iron Man 3" pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy's hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man?
Starring Robert Downey, Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Guy Pearce, Rebecca Hall, Stephanie Szostak, James Badge Dale with Jon Favreau and Ben Kingsley, "Iron Man 3" is directed by Shane Black from a screenplay by Drew Pearce and Shane Black and is based on Marvel’s iconic super hero Iron Man, who first appeared in the pages of TALES OF SUSPENSE #39 in 1963 and had his solo comic book debut with THE INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #1 in May of 1968.
"Iron Man 3" is presented by Marvel Studios in association with Paramount Pictures and DMG Entertainment. Marvel Studios' President Kevin Feige is producing and Jon Favreau, Louis D'Esposito, Stephen Broussard, Victoria Alonso, Alan Fine, Charles Newirth, Stan Lee and Dan Mintz are executive producers. The film releases May 3, 2013, and is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.
In addition to "Iron Man 3," Marvel Studios will release a slate of films based on the Marvel characters including "Thor: The Dark World" on November 8, 2013; "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" on April 4, 2014; "Guardians of the Galaxy" on August 1, 2014; the untitled "Marvel's The Avengers" sequel on May 1, 2015; and "Ant-Man" on November 6, 2015.