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.
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.
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.
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.
This unique release of Audi working on a photo shoot for its new A1 subcompact is rather odd yet interesting. The models for the shoot were two members from the German band Tokio Hotel, packed together in a warehouse filled with 22 classic pieces of steel.
The integration of Audi’s A1 pre-’60s hardware and the ‘50s drag race flavour they have tried to create comes down to the individual’s opinion on whether it works or not. Maybe Audi is looking to flex the customizable side of the A1, or maybe the ad department was just looking for an excuse to meet a couple of members of Tokio Hotel (whoever they are). At least the song isn’t half bad.
The arrival of the A1 in European markets has meant the tuning of Audi’s baby hatch officially begun. Germany’s Senner Tuning is one fo the first to take on the scowling three-door and has beefed up the 1.6 TDI model, boosting output from 77kW to 102kW. But it doesn’t come cheap with just the engine mods alone costing â‚¬899.
If you have even more cash burning a hole in your pocket the comprehensive Senner Tuning Package will see you right for â‚¬4,999. This includes a bolts on adjustable KW suspension set-up, 18-inch Barracuda Voltec T6 wheels, stainless steel sport exhaust and a special paint job. Continue reading “Senner Tuning first to get stuck into Audi A1” »
In a reversal of form and by a margin of just 407 vehicles, the BMW X1 has fended off the Audi Q5 to be Europe’s highest-selling premium SUV for the first six months of 2010. BMW gladly sold 44,067 units of the X1 from January to June, compared to 43,660 units of the Q5.
The Volvo XC60 (29,616 units), Land Rover Freelander (20,138 units) and the BMW X5 (16,565) were the others in the five top selling SUVs in Europe for that time period.
Sales of the X1 have certainly not slowed down and the X1 is the cheapest vehicle in the top five premium SUVs which has clearly helped.
However, the list could get quickly rewritten once 2011 model year vehicles go on sale. This new breed could include X1 competitors from Mercedes-Benz, along with the Audi Q3 and Saab 9-4X. The MINI Countryman may also steal some customers away from the X1, even though it may not be labelled a premium SUV.
The tuning masters at MTM have just revealed a new line of upgrades for the new Audi RS5 Coupe. While MTM still hasn’t released performance upgrades, the tuner has released new software for the factory speed limiter that will allow the RS5 Coupe to reach a far more illegal top speed of 303km/h.
MTM’s other offerings include a custom exhaust system, a large variety of 19- and 20-inch wheels with or without spacers and a TV-set. The German tuner has said a full suspension upgrade will follow shortly.