Audi considering Q5 crossover/cabriolet – seriously

May 11th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Is there really a market for crossover-cabriolet vehicles or is it just one niche too far? Nissan were the first to try and find out the answer with its Murano CrossCabriolet revealed late last year and now it would seem Audi wants a slice of that action as well.

Reports coming out of Europe are claiming that Audi is already at work on a cabriolet version of the Q5. While details remain scarce the new model will likely be based on the Audi Cross Cabriolet Quattro concept (pictured) which first premiered at the Frankfurt Auto Show back in 2007. The Audi Q5 cabriolet is expected to retain the two-door configuration of the concept, and should feature a soft-top roof. An electric motor will handle opening and closing the roof.

The Audi Q5 cabrio will not be an uncompromising driver’s car by any means, but more a highly styled cruiser with high quality materials and unique styling. Expect it to be priced accordingly. Continue reading “Audi considering Q5 crossover/cabriolet – seriously” »

Chicks dig BMW 5-Series and Citroen DS3 – it’s official

April 15th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Many men spend time wondering what exactly is the best car to own if you want to impress the ladies. A Kermit green Series 2 Mazda RX-7 may have done the trick twenty five years ago, but in 2011 women are more impressed by style, economy and practicality. So if you want to win some points pick up your date in a BMW 5-Series or a Citroen DS3.

Because us men were never going to uncover these important results ourselves a crack team of woman motoring writers from around the globe recently held the annual Women’s World Car of the Year for 2011. The voting finished so close that the supreme award produced a dead heat between the BMW 5 Series and the Citroen DS3. So gents, if you’re on a budget go for French style in the DS3, if your cashed-up, then spring for the current 5-Series BMW and don’t cheapen out of the leather trim.

Category winners and runners up in the competition included:

Family Car Winner  – Volvo S60
Runner up – Kia Sportage

Sports Car Winner – Aston Martin Rapide
Runner up – Audi TT

Luxury Car Winner - BMW 5 Series
Runner up – Jaguar XJ

Economical Car Winner - Citroen DS3
Runner up – Mini One Diesel Continue reading “Chicks dig BMW 5-Series and Citroen DS3 – it’s official” »

Audi builds five-millionth A4 model

March 31st, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

If you like it or you don’t the Audi A4 is still a car that deserves respect especially now that five million of the model have been produced.

Audi built the milestone model at its plant in Ingolstadt, the car was a 2.0 TFSI Quattro variant in Misano Red.

Five million cars is a huge number with the A4 helped by a variety of body shapes including a wagon, sedan and the CUV-styled Allroad model. There is also higher-spec options like the Quattro all-wheel-drive system and sports variants.

The A4 is currently in its fourth generation and is known as the B8, which represents a continuation of the Audi 80 lineage. The first A4 was designated as the B5-series, followed by the B6, B7, and the current B8. Continue reading “Audi builds five-millionth A4 model” »

Audi releases R8 Spyder Brazilian road trip video

March 30th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The Audi R8 is a stunning machine in anyone’s book and when it’s in Spyder V10 form it’s the dream car of many. Taking such a machine on a tour of Brazil would be a dream road trip for a lot of adventurous souls. Audi has recognised this and put its R8 Spyder against a Brazilian back-drop for a stylish and relaxed promotional video.

Take two minutes out of your day, sit back, crank up the volume, watch the video below and let yourself do some serious daydreaming. Continue reading “Audi releases R8 Spyder Brazilian road trip video” »

Audi unleashes big-eyed R18 Le Mans prototype racer

December 13th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Audi has just pulled the covers off its newest LMP1 Le Mans prototype racer, the R18. The new machine looks suitably hardcore and has abandoned the open-top design of its predecessors — the R8, R10 and R15 Plus — for a closed roof to improve aerodynamics and reduce driver fatigue. Audi has been very successful at the Le Mans 24 Hours race in recent years winning it nine times since 1999 with the R8, R10 TDI and R15 TDI. The R18 looks set to continue the legacy.

Unlike the earlier R15, which used a 5.5-litre V10 diesel engine, the new model generates power from a much smaller, 3.7-litre TDI V6 engine, mated to a modified six-speed transmission.

The R18 uses a single-piece carbon fibre monocoque, which keeps weight down and increases stiffness.

In terms of exterior design the headlights are the most eye-catching parts of the R18. The headlights make use of “optimised” LED technology, they incorporate Audi light designers’ personal touch: daytime running lights shaped like a “1″.

The Audi R18 was first approved in mid 2009, while engine testing began in summer 2010. The first track test took place at the end of November and Audi is now planning to enter three cars into next years Le Mans 24 hour endurance race.

Check out more images of the Audi R18 in the gallery below. Continue reading “Audi unleashes big-eyed R18 Le Mans prototype racer” »

Porsche confirms smaller ‘Cajun’ SUV for production

December 1st, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Rumours of a smaller Porsche SUV have been circulating the web for years now but Porsche has finally ended speculation and officially green-lighted its entry-level Cajun crossover.

Designed to increase sales volumes and attract new, younger customers, the Cajun will be an “efficient and sporty model” with design goals of “typical Porsche features such as light weight, ease of handling and agility.” The new crossover will share a platform with the Audi Q5 and feature styling influenced by VW design boss Walter de’ Silva. It will be given sportier themes and priced around five to ten percent higher than the Audi.

The Cajun is expected to be launched in 2014 and will be a direct and fierce competitor for the Mercedes GLK, BMW X3, and Land Rover Evoque.

Click here to read a Car and SUV review of the 2011 Porsche Cayenne

Audi Quattro concept – promotional video released

November 29th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Audi has just released a promo video for its new Quattro concept, the vid offers insights into the birth of the retro-inspired concept car.

The popular Quattro concept was unveiled this year at the Paris auto show as a celebration of the famous rally car that introduced all-wheel-drive to the sport. The concept is in essence a shorter A5 that has been stiffened, lightened and received various updates.

Power comes from a 2.5-litre engine producing 408 hp and 480 Nm of torque. Official 0 to 100 km/h acceleration time for the concept is quoted at 3.9 seconds.

While Audi has not officially announced that it will put the Quattro concept into production, it’s received massive interest and various inside sources have confirmed that it will reach the streets in the future.

Check out the promotional video below. Continue reading “Audi Quattro concept – promotional video released” »

Audi unveils Quattro Concept to celebrate original’s 30th birthday

October 1st, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Audi has just revealed its ‘quattro concept’ in Paris as a tribute to the 30th anniversary of the original car’s debut back in 1980. There’s plenty to like about the concept machine but what’s extra hot is that, like the original, it’s powered by a turbocharged 5-cylinder.

In this case, though, the 2.5-litre mill makes a stonking 300 kW and uses a 6-speed manual transmission to, of course, power all four 20-inch wheels with 480 Nm of torque. Stopping the bease are chunky carbon-ceramic discs wearing 6-piston grippers.

With its high-output 5-cyl and lightweight construction, this new concept can hit 100 km/h in just 3.9 seconds and return an impressive fuel economy of 8.5 liters/100 km.

Based on the much-loved RS5, Audi’s top designers shaved 150 millimeters off the wheelbase – now 2.6 meters – and chopped the roof by 40 mm in an attempt to immediately save weight. Dimensions are stated as 4.28 m long, 1.86 m wide, and 1.33 m tall.

In order to reach the 1,300 kilograms target, Audi used aluminum and carbon fibre in liberal doses. The bonnet, hatch and spoiler are made from carbon fibre and the rear seats have also been thrown out and replaced with a small luggage shelf.

In terms of exterior styling the front fascia is an all-LED light setup, in between sits Audi’s signature wide-mouth grille and the retro-inspired bonnet scoop is above.

The interior is well detailed but suitably spartan with two 18-kilo passenger seats with either three- or four-point harnesses. The driver will make use of a fully digital display which has two modes, “normal” and “race”. When choosing race mode, Audi says the graphics “revisit and refine” original Quattro’s digital display.

Continue reading “Audi unveils Quattro Concept to celebrate original’s 30th birthday” »