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World premiere of piloted driving

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The future arrives with the new Audi A8 ready for UK debut

The luxury class car of the future is no longer just a dot on the horizon - the new Audi A8 becomes available in the UK later this month, breaking new ground for the brand with its design language, innovative touchscreen operating concept and electrified MHEV drivetrain. It opens a world of possibilities for fully automated mobility.

The Audi A8 is the first production car in the world to have been developed for highly automated driving, and from 2018 will be progressively introducing piloted driving functions such as the Audi AI parking pilot, garage pilot and traffic jam pilot into production.

Priced from £69,100 OTR, and due with its first customers in early 2018, the fourth generation luxury saloon built at the Neckarsulm plant in Germany draws inspiration for its design from the Audi prologue study, and makes a suitably emphatic statement whether in 5.17-metre ‘standard’ form or as the A8 L, which has a 13 centimetre longer wheelbase.

The balanced proportions emphasise all four wheels in equal measure, and the muscular definition above the wheel arches gives visual expression to the standard quattro all-wheel drive. Viewed side-on, the upright front end combined with the gently inclined rear create visual tension which is intensified, particularly at night, by the optional HD Matrix LED headlights with Audi laser lighting, and the LED light strip combined with OLED technology at the rear. These produce unique light animations as the driver approaches and leaves the car.

Space is often considered to be the ultimate luxury, and compared with its predecessor the new A8 has grown substantially in length in both body styles. Occupants can relax in suitably exceptional surroundings that radiate quality - from the perforation in the seat upholstery to the electrically opening and closing shutters on the air vents - and subtly integrate the most advanced technology.

The interior design is deliberately reductive, and this has been made possible thanks in large part to a radically different operating concept that dispenses with the familiar rotary pushbutton and touchpad of the previous generation car, and also renders many of the familiar instrument panel buttons and switches unnecessary. At its centre is a 10.1-inch touchscreen display which, when off, blends almost invisibly into the high-gloss black surround thanks to its black-panel look.

The user interface appears as soon as the car is opened. The Infotainment system is controllable via the large display, and a second touchscreen on the centre tunnel console gives access to the air conditioning and comfort functions and enables text inputs. Function activations are acknowledged in the upper and lower displays by a click which can be heard and felt, and the glass-look operating buttons respond in the same way. Activations can also be made via a new, natural form of voice control.

Information on destinations and media is either available on board or is delivered from the cloud at ultra-fast LTE speed. The navigation system has also evolved in line with the car which houses it – it is able to learn from the route just driven, providing the driver with intelligent search suggestions, and also incorporates highly detailed 3D models of major European cities.

Drivers of UK specification versions of the A8 and A8 L will be left in no doubt as to their status as the technology standard bearers of the Audi range. The fittingly extensive UK standard equipment list includes everything from the fully digital Audi Virtual Cockpit, the high definition colour head-up display and internet-based Audi Connect services to MMI Navigation Plus and Audi Phonebox wireless smartphone charging.

Standard LED headlights with high beam assist provide suitably precisely defined and far-reaching illumination and are paired with a rear LED light strip. The list of onboard driver aids also includes adaptive cruise assist with Stop&Go, front and rear parking sensors supplemented by a rear camera, lane departure warning with emergency assist and the Audi Pre-sense collision avoidance and mitigation system giving robust occupant protection.

Naturally, supple Valcona leather covers the electrically adjustable climate comfort seats, which offer both a heating function for colder days and an internal ventilation option for warmer weather. In the long-wheelbase A8 L the most sought-after seat could quite possibly be the rear left (in UK specification versions) – the optional relaxation seat which features four different adjustment options and a footrest. In this seat, the passenger can warm and massage the soles of their feet on a unit with multiple settings incorporated into the back of the front-passenger seat.

Rear passengers can also control an array of functions such as ambient lighting, the optional HD Matrix reading lights and seat massage, and can make private phone calls via a separate operating unit. The rear seat remote control, with its smartphone-size OLED display, is a removable unit housed in the centre armrest and is optional for the A8 and standard for the A8 L.

The new A8 is the first production car to have been developed specially for highly automated driving. The Audi AI traffic jam pilot, which forms part of the package of piloted features that will begin to be rolled out from 2018, takes charge of driving in slow-moving traffic at up to 37mph on major roads where a physical barrier separates the two carriageways. The system will be accessible via the AI button that will be positioned on the centre console.

Using images of the car’s surroundings computed by the central driver assistance controller (zFAS) based on feedback from the radar and ultrasonic sensors, from the front camera and – in a first for Audi – from an advanced laser scanner, the traffic jam pilot will manage starting, accelerating, steering and braking. The driver will no longer need to monitor the car permanently, and will be able to take their hands off the steering wheel for prolonged periods and, depending on the national laws, focus on a different activity that is supported by the car, such as watching the on-board TV. As soon as the system reaches its limits, it will call on the driver to take back control of the task of driving.

The introduction of the Audi AI traffic jam pilot is wholly dependent on the clarification of the statutory framework in each individual market, along with the country-specific definition of the application and testing of the system. In addition, a range of approval procedures and their corresponding timescales will need to be observed worldwide. Audi will therefore be adopting a step-by-step approach to the introduction of the traffic jam pilot in production models.

The Audi AI parking pilot and the Audi AI garage pilot will autonomously steer the A8 into and out of a parking space or a garage, while the manoeuvre is monitored by the driver. The driver does not need to be sitting in the car – he or she can start the appropriate system from a smartphone using the new myAudi app. It broadcasts a live feed of the parking manoeuvre taken from the car’s 360-degree cameras on their handheld device for easy monitoring.

The new A8 makes its debut with two extensively reengineered V6 turbo engines: a 3.0 TDI and a 3.0 TFSI. The diesel develops 286PS, and the petrol version 340PS. An eight-cylinder TDI – a 4.0-litre with 435PS – will follow slightly later, as will the exclusive top engine version, the W12 with a displacement of 6.0 litres.

All four engines operate in conjunction with a belt alternator starter (BAS), which is the nerve centre of the 48-volt electrical system. This mild hybrid technology (MHEV, mild hybrid electric vehicle) enables the car to coast with the engine switched off, and to restart smoothly. It also has an extended start/stop function and an energy recovery output of up to 12 kW. The combined effect of these measures is to bring down the fuel consumption of the already efficient engines even further – by as much as 0.7 litres for every 100 kilometres (62.1 miles) covered in real world driving conditions.

The A8 L e-tron quattro with its powerful plug-in hybrid drivetrain will follow at a later date: Its 3.0 TFSI engine and powerful electric motor achieve 449PS of system power and 700 Nm (516.3 lb-ft) of system torque. The lithium-ion battery stores enough power for about 31 miles of electric driving. Fast charging will be possible via public or domestic charge points and wall boxes, or in the latter case via induction-based Audi Wireless Charging, which uses a pad in the garage floor to transfer power inductively to a receiver coil in the car with a power output of 3.6 kW.

The platform underpinning the new Audi A8 combines the surface-suppressing comfort of standard adaptive air suspension with the all-weather control of quattro all-wheel-drive throughout the range. It also epitomises Vorsprung durch Technik through additionally available features including predictive active suspension, dynamic all-wheel steering and the sport differential.

The optional predictive active suspension is a fully active suspension system which is capable of raising or lowering each wheel separately using electric actuators depending on the driver’s wishes and the driving situation. This newfound latitude enables it to deliver an even more finely differentiated balance between the ride comfort of a classic luxury saloon and the agility more commonly associated with a more driver-oriented performance car. In combination with pre sense 360°, the car is rapidly raised if there is an impending lateral collision, reducing the potential consequences of the accident for all occupants.

This highly innovative suspension system obtains the energy it requires from a 48-volt electrical circuit. The A8 is the first Audi model to use this more powerful network as its primary electrical system, and all versions reap its benefit. In conjunction with the advanced air suspension for the A8, the innovative fully active suspension concept delivers an utterly new driving experience.

The dynamic all-wheel-steering system combines quick and direct response with unshakable stability. The steering ratio for the front wheels varies as a function of speed, and the rear wheels are turned in or against the direction of steering depending on the speed range. Reactivity to inputs can be enhanced even further by adding the sport differential, which actively distributes torque between the rear wheels.

Incy wincy Spyder: Audi’s V10 plus super-beast spins web of speed

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The Audi R8 Spyder V10 plus from the workshop of Audi Sport GmbH is the fastest series-production convertible model from the brand with the four rings.

Its unmistakable 610 hp V10 mid-engine offers intense driving performance and powers the quattro permanent all-wheel drive.

Coming in at an eye-watering £137,450 list price, it’s padded out with £16,000 of options – and it already comes notably better equipped than the £122,450 standard version.

Not only do you get an extra 69bhp for your money, but also carbon ceramic brakes, one-piece bucket seats, carbon rear spoiler, mirrors and side blades, sports exhaust and matt carbon inside.

Incredibly high revving up to 8,700 rpm, lightning-quick responsiveness and an awe-inspiring, voluminous sound - the V10 mid-engine is an object of fascination.

With 449 kW (610 hp) and maximum torque of 560 Newton meters at 6,500 revolutions per minute, it is the most powerful series-production engine from the brand with the four rings.

Compared with the Audi R8 Spyder V10, the naturally aspirated 5.2 FSI engine, with a high 12.7:1 compression ratio in the plus version, features a 52 kW (70 hp) boost in performance.

As a result, the top model sprints to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in 3.3 seconds - 0.3 seconds faster - and achieves a top speed of 328 km/h (203.8 mph), an increase of 10 km/h (6.2 mph). Each hp only has to move 2.78 kilograms (6.1 lb).

It consumes 12.5 litres per 100 kilometre, which corresponds to CO2 emissions of 292 grams per kilometre.

Behind the V10 there is a seven-speed S tronic with lightning-fast action. The sporty dual-clutch transmission, with its short transmission ratio, sends power to the quattro drive system in the front axle via a cardan shaft.

All four wheels of the Audi R8 Spyder V10 plus are guided through aluminium double wishbone suspensions - this solution also demonstrates the model line's closeness to motorsport.

The setup is firm and the electromechanical power steering offers the ideal specific combination of precision, handling and confident high-speed behaviour for a sports car.

Audi mounts a mix of tyres - 245/35 on the front, 295/35 on the back - on the standard 19-inch forged aluminium wheels in five twin-spoke design. The large brake discs - 380 millimetres (15.0 in) diameter in front, 356 millimetres (14.0 in) in back - are manufactured from temperature-resistant and lightweight carbon fibre ceramic composite. The anthracite gray fixed calipers feature six pistons on the front axle and four in the rear.

The Audi R8 Spyder V10 plus has an angular and athletic stance on the road. It is 4.43 meters (14.5 ft) long and 1.94 meters (6.4 ft) wide, but just 1.24 meters (4.6 ft) tall. The most distinctive element on the front is the wide and flat Singleframe grille with its gloss honeycomb mesh, chrome-plated frame and the Audi Sport emblem. Below it stretches a low-lying carbon spoiler, which directs air around the large wheels.

The standard equipment package for the R8 Spyder V10 plus includes a superb infotainment system - the MMI navigation plus with MMI touch. It features impressive and intuitive control logic with flat hierarchies. Added to this is a free text search that delivers suggested hits after only a few letters are typed in.

Standard seatbelt microphones provide for optimal audio quality, even when the top is down. In addition, the MMI navigation plus has an integrated Wi-Fi hotspot for the mobile devices of passengers.

The optional Audi connect module enables fast internet access via LTE. Its offerings include numerous services ranging from navigation with Google Earth and Google Street View to travel and traffic information as well as point-of-interest searches.

In addition, the Audi smartphone interface also displays selected content from iOS and Android smartphones in the Audi virtual cockpit.

The Bang & Olufsen sound system provides an excellent audio experience - even while driving with the top down. It integrates two head restraint loudspeakers in each seat.




Audi R8 V10 Plus


Engine 5204cc 40v V10, 602bhp @ 8250rpm, 413lb ft @ 6500rpm

Gearbox 7-speed dual-clutch

All-wheel drive 

Stats 3.2sec 0-62mph, 205mph, 287g/km CO2 

Price £137,450

Official mpg 21.9

First deliveries expected late 2017



Brooding good looks

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Audi Q3

New Audi Q3 Black Edition get styling and equipment enhancements

The dark and brooding good looks of the Black Edition models that have been mainstays of the Audi A4, A5, A6 and A7 Sportback ranges have inspired a new Q3 Black Edition that spearheads a wholesale update of the perenially popular compact SUV line-up.

The new top flight Q3 and the sharper, even better equipped versions that sit below it will become available later this month priced from £26,600 OTR, and will reach their first customers towards the end of the year.

Replacing the S line plus model, the Q3 Black Edition it builds on that version’s already extensive specification.

Its key point of differentiation is of course the distinctive black treatment for many of its parts. These start with the cabin with piano black inlays, and continue outside to take in everything from the 19-inch alloy wheels, wheel arch cappings and Single Frame grille surround to the roof rails, rear spoiler and tailpipes, all of which are finished in gloss black.

Aside from the now range-wide satellite navigation, standard equipment for all Q3 models is plentiful, and includes Audi Music and Bluetooth interfaces, sensor control for parking (rear only in the Sport, front and rear in the S line Edition and Black Edition), for lighting and for wiper function, dual-zone climate control and a Concert audio system with DAB radio linked to a 6.5-inch manually retractable colour monitor.

Audi Q3

Under the skin, two TDI diesel and two TFSI petrol engines are available, depending on the chosen specification.

The 1.4-litre TFSI, with the option of either manual or S tronic twin-clutch automatic transmission, gives a 0-62mph sprint time of as little as 8.9 seconds.

Above it in the petrol line-up is a 2.0-litre TFSI unit with 180PS, which can be linked to either manual or S tronic transmission and works with quattro all-wheel-drive without exception.

Forming the diesel contingent are two four-cylinder, 2.0-litre TDIs with outputs of 150PS and 184PS. The 2.0-litre 150PS TDI engine can work with either manual or S tronic transmission and can channel its output through either the front wheels only or through all four with the help of the quattro system. The 184PS version also offers two transmission options, but deploys its heightened power and torque solely via quattro drive.

Up to five adults can enjoy the ride in comfort and with space to spare, and their luggage can be equally comfortably accommodated in the 420-litre load compartment. When the back seat is free, its split backrest can be folded to liberate a total of 1,325 litres of cargo capacity.

New Audi R8 Spyder hits UK

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New Audi R8 Spyder hits UK (800x503)

The all-new Audi R8 Spyder has gone on sale, with first UK deliveries starting later on this year.

Priced from £129,990, the R8 Spyder is capable of reaching 62mph in just 3.6 seconds and will carry on to a top speed of 197mph thanks to its V10 engine producing just over 530bhp. Driving all four wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, the R8 Spyder offers impressive traction in almost all conditions.

Despite the performance, the R8 Spyder can still return 24.1mpg, and emits 277g of C02 per kilometre.

Based on the successful R8 Coupe, the Spyder offers supercar thrills in the open air. The fully retractable cloth hood can be raised or lowered in just 20 seconds at speeds of up to 31mph. Strengthening has also been added to ensure that the Spyder remains as taught as the Coupe, coming in the form of reinforcements in the sills and windscreen frame.

This allows torsional rigidity to be increased by over 50 per cent when compared to the outgoing model.

The amount of technology incorporated in the R8 Spyder has also been increased. Now, drivers will find Audi’s Virtual Cockpit display, as well as a smartphone interface.

Drivers who wish to add something a little extra to their R8 Spyder can do so through the Sport Plus Pack, which adds variable ratio steering, adaptive damping and a sports exhaust. This features black tailpipes that help distinguish it from the standard Spyder.

High voltage diesel SUV

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audi SQ7 TDI INSIDE (800x533)

Audi opens order books for possibly UK’s fastest most powerful 4x4

Technological trendsetter can now be configured on and ordered in UK Audi Centres nationwide

New 435PS and 900Nm Q7 flagship priced from £70,970 OTR, available to order now with first deliveries starting in August

Standard specification includes S-specific interior and exterior details, virtual cockpit, adaptive S air suspension, active sound exhaust system, rear view camera and Valcona leather upholstery with S embossing

New driving dynamics sports pack featuring quattro with sports differential, all-wheel steering and electromechanical active roll stabilization exclusive to the SQ7 TDI

Key optional equipment also includes 22-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, carbon ceramic brakes, Audi Matrix LED headlights, tour pack featuring traffic jam assistance and night vision

audi SQ7 TDI COCKPIT (800x533)

Audi’s ultimate hedge against the alternative-fuel future is offering every possible type of powertrain.

In Europe, various members of the Audi lineup can run on natural gas, hydrogen, electricity, gasoline, or diesel, and there are all sorts of hybrids across varying body styles. The brand’s latest entry is a high-performance diesel SUV, the SQ7 TDI, which blends proven, decades-old technology with a complex, state-of-the-art forced-induction system.

Now, another pioneer joins the UK Audi range– the new SQ7 TDI, priced from around £71,000. Not only is it notably the first ever ‘S’ version of the Q7 luxury SUV, but is also the first series production car to incorporate new electric powered compressor (EPC) technology that consigns ‘turbo lag’ to history.

Supporting two sequentially activated turbochargers, the EPC helps to generate pulling power that is unparalleled in this class. The V8 TDI-powered Q7 flagship is able to deftly deploy it thanks to a chassis bolstered by state-of-the art electromechanical active roll stabilisation. The integration of both systems is made possible by a powerful new 48-volt electrical subsystem which makes its Audi debut in the Q7 and will be the springboard for numerous revolutionary new technologies in the Audi models of the near future.

As it is electrically driven and therefore not dependent upon exhaust flow like conventional turbochargers, the revolutionary electric powered compressor (EPC) brings its force to bear on the 4.0-litre, eight-cylinder TDI in less than 250 milliseconds, so its benefit is palpable from the second the accelerator pedal is depressed.

audi SQ7 TDI main (800x533)

Whenever the exhaust gases provide sufficient energy two sequentially activated ‘conventional’ turbochargers take over, all-the-while accompanied by a compelling V8 bellow from the active sound exhaust system.  

Now developing 435 PS and 900 Nm (663.8 lbft) of torque, the redesigned V8 BiTDI firmly stakes this performance flagship’s claim as the most powerful diesel SUV on the market.

With the electric powered compressor (EPC) supporting the work of the two turbochargers, especially at lower revs, step-off performance is exceptional, and this is reflected in a 0-62mph sprint time of just 4.9 seconds. Top speed is limited to 155mph, and in the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC), the SQ7 TDI returns up to 39.2 mpg combined. This corresponds to CO2 emissions of 190 g/km.

The Audi valvelift system (AVS), which makes its debut in a TDI engine in the SQ7 TDI, keeps one valve closed at low and intermediate load and rpm so that the entire exhaust flow reaches the so-called “active” turbocharger. If engine speed increases to the range between 2,200 and 2,700 rpm, the respective second exhaust valve is opened and the second turbocharger is also activated.

The power for the EPC – which peaks at 7 kW – is provided by a 48-volt electrical subsystem, which also makes its Audi debut here. To meet its high power requirements, there is a separate 48-volt lithium-ion battery in the electrical subsystem beneath the luggage compartment. It has a peak output of up to 13 kilowatts, and is connected to the more familiar 12-volt electrical subsystem by a DC/DC converter.

AUDI SQ7 6 (800x533)

In the interest of agility the sport differential actively controlling torque distribution between the rear wheels can also be specified for the first time in the history of the Q7 in the new SQ7 TDI.

All-wheel-steering is also available to promote even greater stability at higher speeds by turning the front and rear wheels in the same direction, and to aid low speed manoeuvrability in urban situations by turning them in opposing directions.

Visual cues to the ranking of the SQ7 TDI include a unique radiator grille design, an aluminium finish for the side air inlets, mirror housings and door inlays, LED headlights with a striking double-arrow light signature and an exhaust system branching into four rectangular tailpipes.

Under the skin, seven comfortable seats across three rows are upholstered in high quality Valcona leather, and the 235 litres of luggage space can be expanded to up to 1,890 litres helped by the standard electrically folding third seat row. Accessibility is also aided by the standard powered tailgate. Occupants enjoy plenty of space as well, along with a generous quota of equipment as befits a model not only bearing the S badge, but also exemplifying Audi technological ingenuity.

The fully digital Audi Virtual Cockpit is one of the many standard features, as is the Audi smartphone interface and MMI Navigation plus with the fingertip-sensitive MMI Touch pad control.

AUDI SQ7 5 (800x533)

Also new to the Q7 range is an embedded SIM card which immediately brings the benefits of Internet-based Audi Connect services to the car at no additional cost and without the need to insert a separate data-only SIM as was previously necessary.

Google Earth mapping, Google Street View, news, weather, online traffic, flight and train information as well as local fuel prices and entertainment options are among the features available via the 7-inch MMI monitor and the 12.3-inch Audi Virtual Cockpit display.

Audi Connect infotainment is offered on a three-month trial basis, or is included for three years if the optional Technology Package and includes the Audi phonebox for wireless smartphone connection to the car’s antenna and wireless, inductive charging and a head-up display projecting key information onto the windscreen in the driver’s field of vision.

Among the more indulgent options available for the new SQ7 TDI are alloy wheels of up to 22 inches in diameter, Matrix LED headlamps capable of diverting their beam around oncoming and leading traffic, S Sport seats plus with contrasting diamond stitching and two optional ‘3D’ surround sound systems from Bose and Bang & Olufsen, the latter offering up to 1,920 watts of music power.

audi SQ7 TDI 3 (800x533)

Future of turbo power

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Audi TT clubsport turbo concept

600PS Audi TT concept can propel from 0-62mph in 3.6 seconds!

The atmosphere will be especially highly charged at this year’s Wörthersee Tour festival because it will play host to an Audi TT clubsport turbo concept delivering a colossal 600PS and 650Nm with the help of an innovative electrically driven biturbo compressor that is close to being production ready.
With its stripped-out interior, wider stance and distinctive rear wing the most extreme TT to date is intentionally reminiscent of the thoroughbred Audi 90 IMSA GTO race car of the late 1980s, so it is guaranteed to make an impact at Austria’s annual meeting for Volkswagen Group enthusiasts.

“The electric biturbo signifies a new dimension in driving enjoyment; it boosts sprinting ability and torque and enables high peak power,” explains Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Audi Board Member for Technical Development. “In our TDI engines, we are close to production readiness with this technology. We are now presenting it in a TFSI – here too, we are the first automaker in the world to do this. For our fans at Wörthersee, we have packaged the electric biturbo in a very sporty show car.”

The Audi TT clubsport turbo has a power-boosted 2.5 TFSI engine with very impressive performance data. From 2,480 cc of displacement, the five-cylinder engine produces 600PS of power and 650Nm (479.4 lb-ft) of torque, the latter from 3,000 to 7,000 rpm. This means that it produces 240PS and 260Nm (191.8 lb-ft) per litre of displacement. Power is transferred via a manual six-speed transmission.


Thanks to systematic lightweight design, the TT clubsport turbo show car has an unladen weight of just 1,396 kg. The car completes the standard sprint from 0 to 62 mph in 3.6 seconds, with a top speed of 192 mph. The TT clubsport turbo plays out its big advantage over the first few metres of a sprint. Its electrically driven compressor lets it cover up to 16 metres within the first 2.5 seconds – which is six metres further than a comparable car without this innovation. That is a difference of around one and one-half car lengths.

An electrically powered compressor offers significant advantages: It revs up to maximum rpm rapidly and without any perceptible delay, and it continues to boost charge pressure when too little drive energy is left in the exhaust gas for the conventional turbocharger. This operating principle makes it possible to design the conventional turbocharger more specifically for high charge pressures and consequently for high engine power – the e-turbo assures spontaneous response and powerful sprints from low engine speeds at all times.

Audi TT clubsport turbo concept

The effect is impressive. The 2.5 TFSI engine builds up its tremendous power without any perceptible delay. This power is available in any situation – whenever the accelerator pedal is pressed. In an acceleration duel, the TT clubsport turbo effortlessly pulls away from a counterpart with an identically powered engine but no electric biturbo.

However, it is not just the power of the five-cylinder engine that is fascinating – so is its unmistakable throaty sound. The exhaust system is designed for minimal back-pressure; a side pipe to the ambient air is located immediately after the racing-type muffler. The 2.5 TFSI engine is cooled by a racing-type radiator. In the lower engine speed range, the electrically driven compressor boosts torque by up to 200Nm (147.5 lb-ft).

A dedicated 48-volt electrical sub-system – another key future technology from Audi – supplies electrical energy to the turbocharger. A compact lithium-ion battery in the luggage compartment stores the energy that is generated by recuperation when coasting. A DC/DC converter provides the connection to the 12-volt electrical system.

The power of the Audi TT clubsport turbo reaches the road impressively via a quattro permanent all-wheel drive system whose multi-plate clutch is mounted on the rear axle for better weight distribution. A coilover suspension system enables highly precise adjustment of the body’s ride height and the compression and rebound of the shock absorbers. An electric lifting function protects the equipment from damage by street kerbs. Electronic stabilisation control (ESC) and torque vectoring round out the dynamic qualities of the suspension ideally.

The show car’s wheels are size 9.5 J x 20. Their six twin-spoke design is finished in a bi-colour look – both gloss turn finished and matt black – and the tyres are size 275/30. Carbon-fibre ceramic brake discs are mounted behind all four wheels; they are very lightweight and wear-resistant. The front brake discs measure 370 mm in diameter.

Widened by 14 cm: spectacular add-on parts
The compact sports car takes a full stance on the road with track widths of 1,736 mm in front and 1,729 mm at the rear. The car is 4.33 metres long and 1.97 metres wide, including the side mirrors – 14 cm wider than the technical platform upon which it was based. Its angular wings contribute a separate additive shape to the car body. They take the characteristic design motif of the Audi TT to an extreme and emphasise the quattro drive.

Audi TT clubsport turbo concept

The wings of the show car – painted in the exterior colour Ferro Titanium – are open at the front and rear. Air from the car’s slipstream flows through them to cool the brakes. The Singleframe grille and large air inlets – whose vertical fins form a continuation to the light signature of the Matrix LED headlights – are also optimised for maximum air throughput.

The manually adjustable rear wing is an advanced development of the Audi Sport TT Cup with which the brand very recently launched a dedicated race series. It is now 20 cm wider, and the side flaps, which feature the four rings, were given a new geometry. The wing consists of carbon-fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) as do all other add-on parts: the air inlets and the large splitter at the front, the side panels and side sill trims as well as the voluminous diffuser at the rear whose lateral segments reference the motif of the air inlets.

A protective “cage” of ultra-high-strength titanium tubes makes the rear zone of the interior even more rigid and safe. In front, there are lightweight race car bucket seats with four-point harnesses. The display and operating concept with the digital Audi virtual cockpit focuses on the driver, who can control all key driving parameters via four satellite buttons on the multifunction steering wheel.

CFRP and black Alcantara define the interior of the Audi TT clubsport turbo. The race seats are upholstered in coral orange Alcantara and feature contrasting stitching and piping. In the doors and on the centre console, CFRP parts with their large surfaces create sporty accents, and the doors are closed by pulling on a tube-shaped grip with an Alcantara inlay. The air vents and gear shifter also have coral orange accents – the aluminium gear shift lever travels in an open shift gate.

Roaring R8

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POWERFUL: The all-new R8 comes in 540PS V10 and 610PS V10 plus versions and are equipped with the latest Audi innovations, including the stunning virtual cockpit display and Audi connect

POWERFUL: The all-new R8 comes in 540PS V10 and 610PS V10 plus versions and are equipped with the latest Audi innovations, including the stunning virtual cockpit display and Audi connect

Fastest and most powerful series production Audi in history

  • Second generation of the acclaimed supercar debuted in Geneva
  • Available to order in the UK from May 2015 priced from £119,500 OTR, 610PS V10 Plus from £137,500 OTR
  • R8 V10 plus - 0-62 mph in 3.2 seconds, 0-124mph in 9.9 seconds, top speed 205mph, combined MPG 23.9
  • Multimaterial Audi Space Frame construction helps to reduce weight by up to 50kg – 40% increase in body rigidity
  • New development of quattro all-wheel-drive system with variable torque control
  • New equipment additions include virtual cockpit, Audi drive select, Audi connect and front/rear park assist

Just days after the global premiere of the all-new Audi R8 at the Geneva Motor Show, potential customers can delve a little deeper into the detail behind the epic supercar now that pricing and specification have been confirmed by Audi UK.

Power for the second generation line-up will be provided exclusively by a ten-cylinder FSI engine delivering 540PS in the ‘standard’ version and a mighty 610PS in the ‘Plus’ model – notable as the fastest and most powerful series production Audi in history. When they become available to order in May the R8 V10 will be priced at  £119,500 OTR and the R8 V10 Plus at  £137,500 OTR.

As befits the dynamic spearhead of the Audi range the latest R8 will feature a host of exceptional features includig all-LED headlamps and tail lamps incorporating dynamic rear indicators with a scrolling function in the intended turn direction.

In the V10 plus version, the headlights are further enhanced by front dynamic indicators and laser spots for the high beams as standard, giving an extended field of vision and increased brightness, and by a high beam assist function for automatic alternation between low and high beam settings.

Both versions will be fitted with 19-inch wheels in exclusive designs as standard, and in the V10 Plus these are combined as standard with ceramic brake discs offering even more assured stopping power.

r8-v10p_002 (800x391)

For the first time R8 V10 plus customers will also have the option to upgrade to a 20-inch wheel. Naturally, each model is fitted with the latest-generation quattro all-wheel drive, which utilises an electrohydraulic multi-plate clutch capable of sending up to 100 percent of torque to the front or rear axle depending on driving conditions.

Inside, Fine Nappa Leather-upholstered sports seats with electric adjustment for V10 models and sculpted bucket seats for the V10 plus will position the driver perfectly in relation to the new multi-function plus steering wheel and the Audi virtual cockpit, both of which make their R8 debut here.

In the R8 V10 the new flat-bottomed steering wheel facilitates control of all the information and entertainment functions offered by the virtual cockpit, and also houses two ‘satellites’ incorporating the control buttons for the Audi drive select system and engine start-stop function, both of which are also new to the R8.

The Performance steering wheel in the Audi R8 V10 plus features two more satellites. One houses a button controlling the exhaust system’s sound-altering adjustable flaps, and the other the activation switch for the ‘performance mode’ which is standard for this version and optional for the V10, along with a rotary wheel enabling selection of this mode’s individual ‘dry’, ‘wet’ and ‘snow’ programs. These programs support dynamic handling on dry, wet and snow-covered surfaces, making use of the ESC stabilisation control function.

The Audi virtual cockpit is set in a free-standing housing and presents all the information on its 12.3-inch display with elaborate and pin sharp graphics. The driver can toggle between different display modes and also adjust the digital instrument cluster to suit in individual mode. In performance mode, the driver is presented with information on the driving programs, acceleration, deceleration and lateral forces as well as power and torque. The Audi virtual cockpit also displays a shift light, which illuminates when the rev limit has been reached.

r8-v10p_004 (800x612)

The driver operates the Audi virtual cockpit using the multifunction plus steering wheel, meaning there is no need to remove a hand from the steering wheel. Alternatively, operation is also possible via the touch wheel or the buttons in the centre console.

Even more of the potential opened up by the state-of-the-art virtual cockpit can be enjoyed by going online in the new Audi R8 – the Audi connect interface is standard, and enables occupants to connect a smartphone or tablet via the system’s integrated Wi-Fi hotspot, and to make use of tailored online services from Audi connect delivered via the fast LTE (Long Term Evolution) network. MMI navigation plus is also standard, and is augmented by the MMI touch wheel with its fingertip-sensitive touch pad enabling easy ‘written’ entry of data into the system.

On the outside, the V10 is equipped with an electrically extending spoiler, while the R8 V10 plus gains a large fixed rear wing in carbon sigma, matching the finish of its  heated and folding exterior mirrors, sideblades, front spoiler lip and rear diffuser.

Further standard items include the front and rear parking assist system and light and rain sensors. To add visual impact to the other more immediately evident attributes of the sonorous mid-mounted 10-cylinder engine, both 540PS and 610 PS versions also feature an interior LED lighting package, which illuminates the glass-covered engine compartment and the footwells.

The extensive list of options available for the new R8 features enhancements that further enrich the driving experience, including the sports exhaust, the magnetic ride adaptive damping system, laser spotlights for the all-LED headlights in 540PS versions (standard for the V10 plus) and bucket seats (also standard for V10 plus), as well as indulgences such as stunning 20-inch alloy wheels and a 500-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system.  Numerous interior decor upgrades and colour combinations for the body and sideblades can also be added to create a uniquely personal R8.

All new R8 drivers will also receive a complimentary Audi Driving Experience at Silverstone. This full day training session will help owners to develop an intimate understanding of the car’s dynamics in the relative safety of the world famous Stowe and Grand Prix circuits.


The Audi Prologue Show Car

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NEW ERA:  The Audi prologue concept takes to the stage at the 2014 LA Auto Show, premiering a new era of design for the premium brand under the leadership of Head of Design Marc Lichte.

NEW ERA: The Audi prologue concept takes to the stage at the 2014 LA Auto Show, premiering a new era of design for the premium brand under the leadership of Head of Design Marc Lichte.

Audi is launching into a new design era which is being showcased at the Los Angeles Auto Show, with the presentation of the prologue concept car, which the brand says is a ‘signature car’ for Audi.”

Audi’s head of design Marc Lichte says they have “put the sportiest car in the luxury segment on wheels”.

The two-door coupe has a flowing, elegant shape and taut design. The entire front of the instrument panel is a large touch display, and a portion of the user interface operates with a new type of OLED display made of organic LEDs.

The show car’s technology combines power, comfort and efficiency. The 4.0 TFSI produces up to 605PS of power and 750 Nm (553.2 lb-ft) of torque; it accelerates the Audi prologue from 0 to 62mph in 3.7 seconds. Its dynamic all-wheel steering, in which the rear wheels can turn up to five degrees, makes the large couple extremely responsive and stable while driving.

The Audi prologue is somewhat shorter and flatter than today’s production A8, with a length of 5.10 metres, wheelbase of 2.94 metres, width of 1.95 metres and height of 1.39 metres.

A dominant feature at its low front end is a single-frame grille displaying the four rings that is integrated into the automobile architecture. The large radiator grille has been widened much more, and it is positioned lower than on today’s production models. Its strong horizontal effect expresses an image of powerful dynamics. The cross bars have a finely structured diamond pattern, and their ends are split.

The headlights – shaped like wide, flat wedges – are located with their tips above the Singleframe. They present high-resolution Matrix laser technology: an innovation from Audi, which opens up new approaches to headlight design and enables completely new functionalities.

The pupils of the headlights are formed by a projection lens with a laser light source – they generate a matrix that illuminates the entire street in high resolution.

Audi’s high performance compact gets a soft top

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Rising temperatures call for a retractable roof, and for the first time in its three-generation history the high performance Audi S3 now has an answer to that call.

The all-new 300PS S3 Cabriolet - the first ever soft-top version of the acclaimed high performance compact - is available to order now priced from £38,910 OTR, and is set to arrive with UK customers from September.

audi S3 cabriolet 2014
At the same time, the TDI arm of the open-air A3 range has also been bolstered by a muscular 184PS 2.0-litre TDI engine which is notable as the first in the history of the A3 Cabriolet ever to be offered with the option of quattro all-wheel-drive. Providing a highly desirable combination of strong performance and 65mpg-plus economy potential, the A3 Cabriolet 2.0 TDI 184PS joins the range priced from £29,735 OTR, and takes to our roads from October.

Beneath the bonnet of the trailblazing S3 is the acclaimed EU6-compliant 2.0 TFSI engine, linked exclusively here to six-speed S tronic transmission and apportioning its power four ways via the multi-plate clutch-based quattro all-wheel-drive system.

Its substantial 300 PS power peak is available between 5,500 and 6,200rpm and peak torque of 380Nm is on tap from 1,800-5,500rpm, so a 5.4-second 0-62mph sprint and a governed 155mph top speed are well within its grasp. Combined fuel consumption stands at an impressive 39.8mpg, corresponding to CO2 emissions of 165g/km.

Too hot to handle

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Dynamics are at their most beautiful with the RS 7 Sportback, the most potent five-door coupé in the Audi range, making it look even sharper and perform even more efficiently, yet no less formidably.

The mighty four-litre twin-turbo V8 engine retains its rightful place at the heart of the new-look RS 7 Sportback, but is with a four per cent reduction in CO2 emissions and improved three per cent fuel consumption.

Searing performance and even sharper style from the new generation Audi RS 7 Sportback

Searing performance and even sharper style from the new generation Audi RS 7 Sportback

Combining the power of a sports car with the elegance of a large, five-door coupé, the revised engine provides the same prodigious 560 PS and catapults the five-door coupé from 0 to 62mph in 3.9 seconds, with top speed of up to 187mph.

An eight-speed tiptronic transmission tuned for optimum performance also features a tall final gear to contribute to fuel efficiency. On a combined cycle, the resonant V8 twin-turbo returns up to 29.7mpg, and emits 221 grams of CO2 per km. A key factor in this efficiency is the Cylinder on Demand (CoD) system, which can shut down four cylinders during partial load operation.

Even at first glance, the Audi RS 7 Sportback reveals its dynamic character – the long bonnet, flowing C-pillars and the sharply sloping rear end form an aesthetic overall impression. New design details such as the single-frame grille with the black honeycomb add striking touches.

Searing performance and even sharper style from the new generation Audi RS 7 Sportback

Searing performance and even sharper style from the new generation Audi RS 7 Sportback

Subtle modifications have also been made to the bumper, with its distinctive air inlets. The headlights now feature LED technology as standard and the Matrix LED technology available for the first time on the RS 7 Sportback, with integrated dynamic turn signals on the front and rear.

In the elegant interior, dominated by the RS sport seats, the designers have made judicious changes to the instrument cluster, including the air outlet controls of the vent nozzles, the shift paddles behind the steering wheel and the quattro emblem on the instrument panel.

The revised Audi RS 7 Sportback is fitted with 20-inch forged lightweight alloy wheels as a standard. Optional 21-inch cast aluminium wheels are available in three different colours.

Searing performance and even sharper style from the new generation Audi RS 7 Sportback

Searing performance and even sharper style from the new generation Audi RS 7 Sportback

The four internally ventilated brake discs have a weight-saving wave design. Alternatively carbon fibre-ceramic discs are available as an option. Electronic Stabilisation Control (ESC) features a Sport mode that can be deactivated altogether if required.

The Audi RS 7 Sportback will be available to order in the UK later this summer ahead of first deliveries in late 2014.

The new Audi TT previewed by official sketches

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At next month’s Geneva Motor Show Audi will pull the wraps from a completely new iteration of the compact sports car that tore up the rulebook and changed the course of design in its class at its 1998 launch. For the third generation of the iconic TT, the designers have reinterpreted a host of ideas from that first, game-changing template.

new Audi TT

new Audi TT

The front end of the new Audi TT has dominant horizontals. The Singleframe grille is broad and flat. Two contours form a V-pattern over the bonnet. The position of the four rings is also new - they now sit centrally on the hood, echoing the R8.

Struts divide up the large air inlets. The headlights repeat this motif – they are structured with divider struts acting as reflectors for the daytime running light. Audi can supply the headlights as an option with LED technology or its pioneering Matrix LED technology, where controllable individual light-emitting diodes generate the main beam.

Many details of the new Coupé’s profile are reminiscent of the first generation’s classic design. The sill contour forms a powerful light edge and the wide wheel arches constitute distinct geometrical entities. At the front, the wheel arch intersects the bonnet join, which continues over the door as the tornado line and extends all the way to the rear. The flat greenhouse looks like an entity in its own right. The shape of the C-pillar, with a slight kink, gives the TT a powerful, athletic look and enhances the impression of tension.

At the rear, too, horizontal lines reinforce the wide and focused impression. The struts in the rear lights pick up on the headlights’ motif. They remain permanently on – another Audi innovation. The third brake light with a flat strip shape links the two units on either side. All engine versions have two large, round exhaust tailpipes in the diffuser. Like all Audi S models, the TTS features four tailpipes.

Inside, too, the styling is so light it almost seems to float, evoking the clean sports car character of the new Audi TT. The centre console and door trims have flowing, matching shapes. Seen from above, the dashboard resembles the wing of an aircraft. The round air vents, a classic TT feature, have a turbine-like look and incorporate the air conditioning controls. This solution – and the elimination of the central MMI monitor, now replaced by the Audi virtual cockpit – paves the way for the dashboard’s remarkably slim architecture.

Sharper lines and a more dramatic interplay between surfaces will be particularly notable features of the third generation of the Audi TT, but they only scratch the surface  of a pedigree sports car that has been systematically refined in every department, both inside and out.

Audi S1 to be revealed soon

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Audi will reveal its 230bhp S1 quattro model in March, ahead of UK sales starting in May.

Audi will unveil its long-awaited S1 hatchback model at the Geneva Motor Show in March, an inside source has confirmed. Powered by a 230bhp version of the turbocharged 2.0-litre engine found under the bonnet of the Audi S3, it will feature quattro four-wheel drive as standard.

As our exclusive image shows, the styling is a subtle evolution of the standard A1, with a deeper bodykit, larger intakes in the front bumper and an S1 badge glued to the grille. It is expected that the S1 variant will be available in both three-door hatchback and five-door Sportback guises with the option of several unique colours, plus quad exhausts.

Audi S1

Audi S1

A dual-clutch S tronic automatic gearbox will be offered, although it’s still unclear whether this or a six-speed manual will be standard fit.

Audi S1

Audi S1

Due to be launched in Geneva alongside the all-new Audi TT, the new S1 hatchback should go on sale in the UK in May. There’s no official word on pricing or specification as yet, but a source suggested it will be similar to the Volkswagen Golf GTI, which means a starting price in the region of £27,000.