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    William Maley
    William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    August 17, 2013
    What do the Honda Civic, Chevrolet Malibu, and upcoming Audi Q7 have in common? All of them have undergone an emergency redesign.
    Motor Trend reports that Audi has ordered a emergency redesign on the next Q7. The original design was described as being "Too Brutal and Ostentatious"and was negatively received. This is possibly one of the reasons that former head of product development at Audi, Wolfgang Dürheimer was pushed out.
    The cost of this emergency redesign? $260 million and being pushed back a year.
    Source: Motor Trend
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    June 17, 2013
    Back at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, Audi unveiled the quattro concept. The concept marked the 30th anniversary of the original quattro being introduced. Talk of a production model came and gone, leaving us wondering if there was the chance of a quattro rebirth ever happening.
    A new report from Autoweek says it could happen. Sources tell the magazine that Audi is preparing a new quattro concept that could be shown as soon as the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show in September. The new concept will pay homage to the Sport quattro, introduced back in 1984.
    Details on this vehicle are somewhat scarce, but sources say the concept will use a modified A5 platform and have many of design cues seen on the 2010 concept. Power will come from a twin-turbocharged 4.0L V8 with over 600 horsepower and a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox. Audi's quattro all-wheel drive system will be standard.
    Initial estimates on performance are a 0-60 MPH time of less than 4.0 seconds and a top speed of 186 mph.
    Source: Autoweek
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    William Maley
    By William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    March 12, 2013
    Audi's current diesel offerings stand at two with the A3 hatchback and Q7 crossover. That will be increasing to six with the A8 TDI coming in the spring and the Q5, A6, and A7 TDIs arriving in the fall. There is one model missing in this list and that is the A4, but that will be changing with the next-generation model.
    Audi of America President Scott Keogh told reporters today that the next-generation Audi A4, due out in 2014 will come with option of a 2.0L TDI engine.
    Audi previously hinted at a diesel for the current A4, but Keogh said it didn't make sense.
    "This deep in its life cycle, it didn't make any sense to do all that dramatic re-engineering and re-architecting of the car to basically only have a two-year selling period," said Keogh.
    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    William Maley
    By William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    February 1, 2013
    At the Los Angeles Auto Show last November, Audi announced they would be offering four models with the option of a diesel engine. The first of those four, the 2014 Audi A8L TDI will be the first to arrive in the U.S. in the spring and have a base price of $83,395 (includes $895 for destination).
    The A8L TDI comes with a 3.0L TDI V6, producing 240 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. Audi's quattro all-wheel drive is standard. Even with the extra weight of TDI being in the long-wheel base model only, Audi says the A8L TDI can reach 60 in 6.4 seconds and gets 24 city/36 highway/28 combined MPG.
    Source: Audi
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Audi announces pricing and fuel economy for 2014 Audi A8 L TDI® clean diesel
    Pricing starts at $82,500 for the first ever 2014 Audi A8 L TDI® clean diesel with an EPA estimated fuel efficiency of 24 city/ 36 highway/ 28 combined MPG
    The Audi A8 has set new standards for the luxury sedan in terms of interior and exterior design, technology, performance and efficiency. Now equipped with the new 3.0 liter TDI clean diesel engine, the 2014 Audi A8 L TDI represents a dramatic expansion of the flagship sedan and the first of four new TDI models to be introduced this year.
    Starting at $82,500, the A8 L TDI clean diesel, with quattro® all-wheel drive, makes a powerful statement in achieving the best fuel economy in its segment with an EPA estimated 24/ 36/ 28 mpg (city/ highway/ combined), while at the same time generating an impressive 240 horsepower, 406 lb.-ft. of torque that seamlessly launches 0-60 MPH in 6.4 seconds.
    For the 2014 Audi A8 L TDI, the package options were optimized to better reflect customer demand. The available Premium Package now consists of Audi side assist and pre sense rear, 22-way multi-contour comfort seats, font seat ventilation with massage and full LED headlights.
    The A8 L TDI joins an expanding model line-up including the A8 3.0T, A8 4.0T, S8 4.0T and A8 W12. The A8 L TDI will be available in the long-wheelbase version only.
    The 2014 Audi A8 L TDI will go on sale in early Spring 2013. Additional 2014 model year information and pricing for other models will be announced at later in the year.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    November 20, 2012
    You have to wonder what automakers see in the BMW X6. Acura has the ZDX, Mercedes-Benz is reportedly working on a competitor, and now Audi appears to be working on one as well.
    According to Car, Audi has given the go ahead on crossover-coupe thing. Possibly named the Q8, it will ride on a the new aluminum-intensive, long-wheelbase MQB architecture that will underpin the the next-generation Audi Q7, Porsche Cayenne, and Volkswagen Touareg. Using this new platform, the Q8 is expected to weigh 300 kg (about 661 lbs) less than the current Q7.
    Power will be provided from range of V6 and V8 gas and diesels engines, plug-in hybrids, and even a high performance RS model.
    Car says the new Q8 is still a ways out and a production model should arrive by 2017.
    Source: Car Magazine
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
    Related Stores:
    Rumorpile: BMW To Show Off The X4 At The Detroit Auto Show Next Year?
    Mercedes-Benz Considering A X6 Rival?

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    November 5, 2012
    Audi appears to be looking back at the first-generation TT model for the next-generation TT. Sources tell Autocar that the design of the next-generation TT will take design elements from the first-gen and current TT to help bring back the distinctiveness and impact that first-gen TT had.
    The next-generation TT will utilize Volkswagen's MQB platform and will have a similar overall size to the current TT but with a wider track. There is also talk of using more aluminum in the TT's structure to help reduce more weight.
    The next TT will arrive first as a coupe sometime in 2014, with a convertible following a year after.
    Source: Autocar
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    October 4, 2012
    A new report from British automotive magazine, Car says that Audi has killed off a program to bring a production model of the quattro concept shown at the 2010 Paris Motor Show. Instead, sources tell the magazine that company is taking the idea of the quattro concept and implementing it into a crossover.
    This crossover will be following in the footsteps of the Range Rover Evoque or Audi's Stepenwolf concept, having a rakish and sporting look. There is also talk of the vehicle having the same short wheelbase and wide wheel fenders as the eighties' quattro S1 Rally car.
    Power will likely come from a hotted-up five-cylinder that will go through a dual-clutch gearbox and a low-friction quattro AWD system.
    Source: Car Magazine
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    June 3, 2012
    Audi of America president Johan De Nysschen stepped down from his post this past Friday. Audi spokesman Brad Stertz told Autoweek that the move is immediate. Stertz also said De Nysschen is leaving for another job.
    In an e-mail to workers, de Nysschen explained why he is stepping down,
    "I do want to make it very clear--this development is unrelated to the present discussion and expectations of reorganization of senior roles inside the VW Group. Rather, it comes from a realization of the future leadership needs of Audi, in order to attain our goal of becoming the most aspirational premium brand in the U.S."
    He goes on to say; "I'd like to think you know me. The spirit of Audi roars within my heart. However, after much reflection, I have the very clear conviction that Audi is at a new inflection point in the ongoing development of the brand in the U.S.--and this demands leadership with new insights and a philosophy which is more appropriate for this new phase for the company. I dearly love this company and all it represents. I thrive on developing turnaround strategies and on building companies, but Audi of America is no longer a construction site. It needs leadership with a different skill set. I want Audi to win. But I too, need to secure my future, and must play to my own strengths. Stepping aside for new leadership, and setting forth to seek out a new "construction site," in a manner of speaking, is a painful but appropriate decision at this time. A win-win, if you like. Such an opportunity presents itself at this time, and I have decided to accept this new challenge."
    de Nysschen has been Audi's U.S. president since December 2004 and has overseen the considerable growth for the brand in image and sales.
    Audi's COO Mark Del Rosso will handle day to day operations until a replacement is found.
    Source: Autoweek

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    April 26, 2012
    Audi has given their midsize crossover, the Q5, a mid-cycle refresh. Not that you actually can tell on the outside or the inside. Both got subtle styling changes and updates. The big news on the Q5 refresh is what lies under the hood.
    The only engine sticking around is the base 2.0T with 225 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque. Everything else is all new. Replacing the 3.2L V6 is Audi's supercharged 3.0T (don't ask why they didn't use an S instead of a T) producing 272 HP and 295 lb-ft of torque.
    Also, coming is a 3.0L diesel churning out 245 hp and a eye-watering 428 lb-ft of torque and a Hybrid model that pairs the 2.0L Turbo and a 54 HP electric motor which together produce 245 HP and 354 lb-ft of torque.
    Press Release is on Page 2
    High-performance SUV with many talents – the updated Audi Q5
    - Completely updated Q5 model series
    - New engine-transmission pairings are up to 15 percent more efficient
    - Audi connect services set new benchmark for infotainment
    INGOLSTADT, Germany, Apr 24, 2012 - Sporty, spacious, comfortable and multifunctional – the Audi Q5 has a versatile and successful character. Now the mid-class SUV is even more attractive, efficient and sporty – adding many new solutions in design, infotainment, chassis and engines. The Q5 hybrid quattro, the brand’s first production hybrid model, unites the power of a V6 with the fuel economy of a four cylinder.
    Audi is launching its updated Q5 with five engine options: three TDI and two TFSI engines. All of these engines combine direct fuel injection with charging, and a start-stop system is standard in all versions. Although most of the engines have enhanced performance, their fuel consumption values were reduced by up to 15 percent.
    The most efficient Q5 series engine is the 2.0 TDI; Audi offers it in two versions. In the version with 105 kW (143 hp) and 320 Nm (236.02 lb-ft) of torque, the four-cylinder engine in combination with manual transmission and front-wheel drive has an average fuel consumption of 5.3 liters of diesel per 100 km (44.38 US mpg) – and a CO2 equivalent of 139 grams per km (223.70 g/mile). The 75 liter (19.81 US gallon) fuel tank enables driving ranges of up to 1,400 km (870 miles).
    The Audi Q5 with 130 kW (177 hp) and 380 Nm (280.27 lb-ft) of torque (with S tronic and quattro drive) has a fuel consumption value of 6.0 liters per 100 km (39.20 US mpg). The 3.0 TDI delivers 180 kW (245 hp) and 580 Nm (427.79 lb-ft) of torque. The V6 diesel – which appears in a new, advanced design and is always paired with a seven-speed S tronic and quattro drive system – accelerates the Q5 from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 6.5 seconds and has a top speed of 225 km/h (139.81 mph). Its combined fuel consumption is just 6.4 liters of fuel per 100 km (36.75 US mpg).
    The gasoline engines of the updated Audi Q5 also feature state-of-the-art technology. A highlight of the TFSI engine line-up is the new two-liter, four-cylinder engine that has numerous innovations such as in the control of valves and their stroke, innovative thermal management, the fuel injection system, turbocharger and integration of the exhaust manifold in the cylinder head.
    The new 2.0 TFSI outputs 165 kW (225 hp) and 350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft). Its fuel consumption (with a manual transmission) is 7.6 liters per 100 km (30.95 US mpg). Producing even more power is the new 3.0 TFSI – the three-liter V6 with supercharging, which replaces the 3.2-liter engine. This engine outputs 200 kW (272 hp) of power and 400 Nm (295.02 lb-ft) of torque. Key performance data: zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 5.9 seconds, top speed 234 km/h (145.40 mph), combined fuel consumption of 8.5 liters per 100 km (27.67 US mpg).
    Each of the engines in the updated Q5 has an optimal transmission system. The four-cylinder engine operates with a manual six-speed transmission as standard equipment. The highly convenient eight-speed tiptronic is available as an option for the 2.0 TFSI with 165 kW (225 hp); it is standard in the 3.0 TFSI. The sporty seven-speed S tronic, on the other hand, is standard in the 3.0 TDI and available as an option in the 2.0 TDI with 130 kW (177 hp).
    The transmissions are integrated in the innovative thermal management system of the four-cylinder versions, a system that significantly shortens the warm-up phase after a cold start. All transmissions have wide gear spreads – the long gear ratios in the upper gears reduce fuel consumption, while the short gear ratios of the lower gears improve dynamic performance in highway driving.
    The quattro permanent all-wheel drive system is standard with all but one engine – only the 2.0 TDI with 105 kW (143 hp) has front-wheel drive. Normally, the center differential distributes engine power to the rear and front axle at a ratio of 60:40, but it can redistribute the power at lightning speed when necessary. The torque vectoring system finishes its job with finely tuned brake interventions.
    The chassis of the Audi Q5 – with its five-link front suspension and trapezoidal-link rear suspension – adds new refinement and comfort in the characteristics of the springs, shock absorbers and stabilizers. The new electro­mechanical power steering system gives the driver a better feel for the road with direct gearing. The system – which adjusts its power assist to vehicle speed – does not consume any energy in straight-line driving, reducing fuel consumption by about 0.2 liters per 100 km.
    The Q5 has 17-inch aluminum wheels and size 235/65 tires (18-inch wheels from 165 kW [225 hp]). Audi and quattro GmbH can deliver wheels with up to 20-inch diagonals and tires up to 255/45. Customers who are particularly focused on sports performance can order the S line sport suspension. The electromechanical parking brake may be supplemented with the optional Audi hold assist, and the standard downhill assist function controls vehicle speed on steep descents. Electronic stabilization control (ESC) adapts its interventions to characteristics of the road surface.
    Another high-end feature in the Audi Q5 is the Audi drive select system. It lets the driver vary the characteristic of the accelerator pedal, the shift points of the automatic transmission, amount of power steering assist and operation of the automatic air conditioning system via four modes, including an efficiency mode. When an Audi navigation system is ordered, a fifth mode is added that is largely user-programmable.
    In addition, three optional components may be integrated in Audi drive select. They are adaptive cruise control, chassis with damping control and dynamic steering, in which the steering gear ratio is modified as a function of vehicle speed via a harmonic drive system. At performance limits in driving through curves, it compensates for understeer and oversteer by intervening with slight steering pulses.
    The Audi Q5 also performs very well on rugged terrain. Its maximum climbing angle is 31 degrees. The vehicle’s approach and departure angles are each 25 degrees, while its ramp angle is 17 degrees. The vehicle’s ground clearance measures 20 centimeters (7.87 inches).
    Exterior styling
    The Audi Q5 is progressive and sporty, spacious and functional. Its styling, with a coupe-like roof line and wrap-around tailgate, visualizes all of these properties – and it is now acquiring distinctive new traits. The interior design of the headlights has been modified; the LED daytime running lights of the optional xenon plus units are shaped as curved bands that surround the headlights. Audi also offers the optional adaptive light with dynamic cornering light and static turning light.
    The horizontal lines of the high-performance SUV’s front end are emphasized more strongly. The high-gloss black Singleframe grille has beveled upper edges; its vertical chrome struts and the Audi rings have a sculpted look. The modified bumpers integrate air inlets with high-gloss black inserts and fog lights with chrome rings.
    When xenon plus headlights are ordered, the tail lights are also designed with a layout of visually uniform LED light bands. The diffuser insert and the tailpipes that taper at the bottom have been redesigned – in two versions, depending on the engine. Roof rails and crossbars are standard equipment.
    There is a range of 15 colors, including four new colors. As options, Audi can deliver an S line exterior package or an offroad styling package; both give the Q5 a unique look with their design details and the colors of add-on parts.
    The updated SUV is 4.63 meters (15.19 feet) long, 1.90 meters (6.23 feet) wide and 1.65 meters (5.41 feet) tall. Its drag coefficient is 0.33 and its frontal area is 2.65 m2 (28.52 square feet); the curb weight of the base version is 1,755 kg (3,869.11 lb).
    The engine hood and trunk lid consist of aluminum, while a large share of the car’s structural elements integrate ultra-high-strength steels; they reduce weight and improve crash safety. The high-performance SUV’s interior has a solid and highly comfortable look. Audi received the “Euro Car Body Award” for the Q5 body – the most prestigious award in car design.
    The interior of the Audi Q5 has made additional strides in refined styling. Many of the user controls have narrow chrome trim; the steering column control stalks, ignition key and instruments were given subtle modifications. The narrow panels of the center console are high-gloss black. All steering wheel versions, including versions with shift paddles, reflect the new Q-specific styling.
    The ergonomics have also been fine-tuned. The central media component, MMI navigation plus, now has four buttons, and its volume dial has an additional skip function. Other refinements have been made to the controls for the seat heating, the new highly efficient air conditioning system, the Audi drive select system and the multifunction steering wheel.
    Extras worthy of special mention are the convenience key, three-zone automatic air conditioning system and climate-controlled comfort seats with a ventilation function. The panoramic glass roof also creates a pleasant atmosphere in the interior.
    An uncompromisingly high quality of workmanship is a matter of pride at Audi. Selections of materials, colors and upholstery fabrics have been updated – three new interior colors, three fabric and three leather qualities and a total of 35 different combinations offer plenty of latitude when it comes to customization.
    Large fabric-upholstered surfaces are standard on the door trim panels; inlay options include three wood veneers and one aluminum version.
    The S line sport package offers a black interior; sport seats and elegant trim components make it even more elegant. The package is completed by 19-inch wheels with 235/55 tires, a sport suspension and the exclusive exterior color Daytona Grey, pearl effect. The design packages, Audi exclusive program and Audi exclusive line offer other exclusive choices.
    The Audi Q5 is a car with outstanding practical talents when it comes to recreational and family activities. It offers ample interior space with a long wheelbase of 2.81 meters (9.22 feet). The seatback angles can be adjusted on the rear seats. When these seats are folded – which is very easy using the remote seatback unlatching feature – the cargo capacity increases from 540 to 1,560 liters (19.07 to 55.09 cubic feet).
    Audi offers an optional rail system for the cargo space, an electric drive for the tailgate, folding front passenger seatback and rear seating system with ten centimeters (3.94 inches) of longitudinal adjustment together with cargo pass-through feature. The Audi Q5 is also a powerful towing vehicle with up to 2.4 metric tons of trailer load, depending on the engine and hill incline.
    Driver assistance systems
    In the updated Q5, the driving is relaxed and carefree – in part due to the highly developed assistance systems from Audi. The driver information system with rest recommendation is a standard feature. If the system detects that the driver’s attentiveness is waning – based on steering wheel movements and other parameters – it recommends that the driver take a break from driving.
    Assuming a central role among the optional assistance systems is adaptive cruise control. The radar-based cruise control system controls the distance to the car ahead in traffic; at speeds under 30 km/h (18.64 mph) it can initiate hard braking if it detects an impending collision. Audi active lane assist can support the driver with small steering interventions to stay on track in a lane. Audi side assist monitors the space behind the Q5 to support the driver in changing lanes.
    Infotainment systems and Audi connect
    Audi offers a broad selection of infotainment systems in the updated Q5. Positioned at the top: the Bang & Olufsen sound system and MMI navigation plus with a large hard drive, seven-inch color monitor, 3D graphics and DVD player. Many system details have been improved, e.g. voice control and the optional digital radio reception. The system is a standard feature in the Q5 hybrid quattro, together with the Audi sound system and color driver information system.
    The Bluetooth car phone online perfectly complements MMI navigation plus. Its integrated WLAN hotspot lets passengers surf the Internet and email with their mobile devices. For the driver, it brings customized Audi connect online services into the car, such as Google Point of Interest search by voice control, navigation with Google Earth images and Google Street View. Audi traffic information online, a service of Audi connect, offers the driver up-to-the-minute information about traffic on the selected route.
    Another new feature is the smartphone app Audi music stream. Q5 drivers can use it to receive more than 5,000 Internet radio stations, and they can save their favorites to their cell phones. The selected program accesses MMI navigation plus via WLAN, and its audio signal is output over the audio system loudspeakers. Web radio is also controlled from the vehicle’s user terminal.
    Audi Q5 hybrid quattro
    The Q5 hybrid quattro, the first hybrid model from Audi, is designed as a highly efficient parallel hybrid. Propulsive power is supplied by a 2.0 TFSI with 155 kW (211 hp) and 350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft) of torque as well as an electric motor with a peak output of 40 kW (54 hp) and peak torque of 210 Nm (154.89 lb-ft). Together, the two power sources can briefly output a system power of 180 kW (245 hp) and a system torque of 480 Nm (354.03 lb-ft).
    The Audi Q5 hybrid quattro accelerates from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 7.1 seconds and can reach a top speed of 225 km/h (139.81 mph). In pure electric mode, it can cover up to three kilometers (1.86 miles) at a constant speed of 60 km/h (37.28 mph). In this mode, its top speed is 100 km/h (62.14 mph), while its combined fuel consumption is just 6.9 liters per 100 km (34.09 US mpg).
    A highly modified eight-speed tiptronic transmission transfers engine power to the drivetrain without requiring a torque converter; its mounting space is taken by the electric motor, which is combined with a multi-plate clutch. The clutch engages and disengages the electric motor and the TFSI. A compact and lightweight lithium-ion battery system with 1.3 kWh energy capacity stores electrical energy. A complex air cooling system maintains battery temperatures within a suitable window.
    The driver switches between the three driving modes with a button and with the tiptronic gear selection lever. The EV characteristic map prioritizes the electric drive, while the D mode efficiently controls both the internal combustion engine and electric motor. The S mode and the manual shift gate of the tiptronic are configured for a sporty style of driving.
    Within these constraints, the hybrid control module chooses the best operating mode at any given time. The Audi Q5 hybrid quattro can be driven with just the TFSI, just the electric drive or in hybrid mode. It can also recover energy during deceleration, or it can boost output for powerful acceleration when both drives work together.
    Outside, the Audi Q5 hybrid quattro can be recognized by its fully painted bumpers and by the hybrid-specific ten-arm turbine design of its wheels. 19-inch wheels are standard; 20-inch wheels are optional. Inside, special instruments display the hybrid’s operating state – such as the powermeter, which replaces the tachometer.
    Despite extensive vehicle upgrading and the addition of new features, the price of the Audi Q5 has barely risen for customers. For example, the 2.0 TDI with 130 kW (177 hp) costs just 150 euros more than the previous model with 125 kW (170 hp); its base price is 39,900 euros. The high-performance SUV will arrive at dealers later this summer.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    April 24, 2012
    Audi is extending their e-tron technology to a luxury sedan. At the Beijing Motor Show, Audi introduced the A6 L e-tron concept.
    Based on the A6 platform, the A6 L e-tron is on a longer wheelbase. Power comes from a 2.0L TFSI engine making 211 HP and is combined with a 95 HP electric motor that is powered by a liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery. The A6 L e-tron can operate in fully-electric, hybrid or gasoline mode as needed.
    Audi says the A6 L e-tron concept is technically an concept at the moment, but did admit that it could indicate what an A6 e-tron could look like.
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Audi A6 L e-tron concept
    Audi is presenting its first luxury-class e-tron concept car – a technology study known as the Audi A6 L e-tron concept at Auto China 2012 in Beijing. The plug-in hybrid has a powerful drive system that enables a driving range of 80 km (49.71 miles) on pure electric power, and it was specifically designed to fulfill Chinese needs.
    The A6 L e-tron concept is an important step towards future electric mobility in China for Audi. With its first e-tron technology study in the luxury class, the company is showing what a locally produced New Energy Vehicle from Audi might look like.
    The basis for this study is the new A6 L, the most successful premium automobile and Audi's bestselling model in China. Audi produces this business sedan at the Changchun plant in a joint venture with FAW.
    The A6 L e-tron concept is precisely tailored to the requirements of Chinese customers. Plug-in hybrids that can travel long distances electrically – thereby enabling zero emissions driving in local areas – are ideal for use in rapidly growing megacities. Beyond its drive system, the A6 L e-tron concept has all of the qualities that customers value in Audi cars: prestige, comfort and sporty performance.
    Parallel hybrid system: intelligently combined TFSI and electric motor
    The technology study is a parallel hybrid. It brings together a 2.0 TFSI that outputs 155 kW (211 hp) and an electric motor with 70 kW (95 hp) peak power. The liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery is located in a collision-protected space at the rear of the vehicle. In electric mode, the Audi A6 L e-tron concept can travel up to 80 km (49.71 miles) at a constant speed of 60 km/h (37.28 mph). At any given moment, the hybrid control module chooses the best suited operating mode with the focus on driving range.
    This technology platform can be operated with only the internal combustion engine, only the electric drive, or in hybrid mode. In addition, it can recover energy during deceleration, or it can boost output power for strong acceleration by combining the two drives. The Audi A6 L e-tron concept delivers sporty performance.
    Setting a course for the future: Audi's e-tron strategy
    The rapid advance in urbanization and the associated need to reduce CO2 emissions are a key determining factor for new drive technologies. Audi views electric mobility as a key future technology and is working on highly efficient solutions that simultaneously offer the customer a typical Audi driving experience.
    Audi has already launched electrified drive systems in volume production with full hybrid models that have highly advanced lithium-ion technology. The Q5 hybrid quattro, A6 hybrid and A8 hybrid can drive up to three kilometers (1.86 miles) on electric power. In combined mode, which uses the internal combustion engine and electric motor, customers experience sporty driving performance and significantly better fuel economy.
    The next step is to implement drive systems in which electric driving is the primary focus. The term Audi e-tron refers to technologies ranging from PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) to range extenders and finally vehicles powered purely by electric batteries or fuel cells.
    In its first Audi e-tron concept car, Audi already showed how this future might look. And in the case of the R8 e-tron, this vision will be realized in a short production run later this year.
    Audi is using A1 e-tron and A3 e-tron test vehicles to acquire important customer feedback, which can be incorporated in later production cars. The first product will be the A3 e-tron in 2014. It will be followed by other New Energy Vehicles. In this way, e-tron will become established as a further attractive drive technology option alongside TDI and TFSI.
    Elegant: the styling
    The Audi A6 L e-tron concept is notable for its elegant styling. The sedan, which has a 3.01 meter (9.88 feet) wheelbase, is 5.02 meters (16.47 feet) long and 1.87 meters (6.14 feet) wide, but only 1.46 meters (4.79 feet) tall. Its long engine hood, its low, extended roof line and the sharp lines on its sides create an athletic overall look. Characteristic Audi LED headlights emphasize the car's determined expression.
    The car's exterior styling shows its differences from the production car. At the front, the single-frame grille with its slender cross-bars and the nearly covered air intakes attract the eye – both features are typical of all e-tron models. Powerful 21-inch wheels in e-tron design and the special rear diffuser highlight the car's progressive character. On the body, signatures identify the prototype's technology, while under the engine hood a styling capsule covers engine components. A ribbed contour at its center symbolizes the hybrid drive.
    Lightweight and strong with Audi ultra: the body
    The body of the A6 L e-tron concept is identical to that of the Audi A6 L. It is lightweight, rigid and safe to a maximum degree, due to application of the ultra lightweight principle. Consisting of approximately ten percent aluminum, it weighs about 15 percent less than a comparable all-steel design. Aluminum components in the load-bearing structure and exterior skin, as well as the high-tech steels used in the occupant cell, make the body significantly lighter.
    Each new future Audi model will be lighter in weight than the previous model. This makes the brand a frontrunner in reversing the upward weight spiral. In designing car bodies, developers will intelligently use new combinations of materials, including carbon fiber-reinforced polymer (CFRP). For Audi, ultra lightweight construction does not solely focus on one material, rather it seeks a flexible approach that utilizes a wide variety of materials – but with one goal: to attain the best performance with the least material usage at the best places.
    Furthermore, advanced materials and construction methods achieve an extremely low sound level in the interior of the Audi A6 L e-tron concept. Excellent vibration comfort is attained by fine-tuning components and by hydraulically damping axle and drive mounts.
    Comfortable and sporty: the chassis
    Audi's ultra lightweight construction competence is also found in the chassis, which combines a high level of comfort with sporty handling. The links are made of aluminum. The power steering, like the brake booster and the air conditioning compressor, utilizes an electromechanical drive.
    At the limits of performance in driving through curves, the electronic transverse differential lock – a function of electronic stabilization control (ESC) – stabilizes the Audi A6 L e-tron concept by making small interventions at the front wheel on the outside of the curve.
    Luxurious: interior and features
    As in the Audi A6 L before it, the interior of the technology platform continues the elegant styling of its exterior design. Its defining element is an arc under the windshield – the wrap-around – that surrounds the driver and front passenger. The front of the instrument panel is designed in the form of a flowing wave. All of the interior details illustrate the aesthetic standard with which Audi builds its vehicles. All materials have been carefully selected and meticulously worked into the design.
    The controls are intuitive. The powermeter replaces the tachometer; its pointer indicates total drive system power on a scale of zero to 100 percent. Colored segments indicate the current operating state of the A6 L e-tron concept; an auxiliary instrument visualizes the charge state of the lithium-ion battery.
    Meanwhile, the energy flow indicator tells the driver the current operating mode and which hybrid drive components are currently active. It can be called up from the driver information system or MMI monitor. The large screen shows a bar diagram of average fuel economy and indicates the amount of recovered energy over five-minute intervals.
    The Audi A6 L e-tron concept offers a lot of space at all seating positions. It integrates all of the model line's luxury-class features. The seats offer ventilation and massage functions, the Bose surround system delivers good sound, and the deluxe automatic air conditioning system with air ionizer ensures a pleasant climate in the car. Ambient lighting adds subtle highlights to the interior illumination.
    The driver assistance and safety systems also satisfy the highest standards. Audi active lane assist supports the driver in lane-keeping, while Audi side assist helps to change lanes. When it is dark, the night vision assistant highlights detected pedestrians even at a distance; the parking assistant helps in parking. The Audi pre sense system can reduce the severity of accidents and their consequences in many cases.
    The car's features also include MMI navigation plus. Many functions of the large hard-drive navigation system can be controlled by touchpad character input; the touch-sensitive pad, MMI touch, recognizes 29,000 Chinese characters. A team of engineers developed these functions at the Audi Infotainment Tech Center (ITC) in Beijing, where infotainment components from Germany are adapted to suit the wishes of Chinese customers.

    William Maley

    Spying: Audi Q6

    By William Maley, in Audi,

    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    March 23, 2012
    Is there such a thing as too many crossovers? Not to Audi. They currently sell the Q3, Q5, and Q7, and there is a forth coming along.
    A spy photographer caught a Q5 mule undergoing some winter testing and many believe what lies underneath the body is the new Q6. You might be wondering how they reached that conclusion and its simple. The pictures show this Q5 a little longer and wider than the production Q5.
    The Q6 will be Audi’s competitor to the BMW X6 (don’t even ask why). Expect a coupe like shape and lowered stance. The engine range will include four-cylinder and V6 turbocharged engines in both diesel and gasoline forms, and a hybrid model is possible.
    Source: CarScoop

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    February 15, 2012
    The current Audi TT has been around with us since 2006 and it’s hiding its age very well. That doesn’t mean Audi is hard at work with the next generation TT. Autocar has learned some interesting information dealing with the next generation model.
    Audi officials say the goal of the next TT is to be “more driver orientated” than the current model.
    Audi’s plan to reach this goal factors on many things. One of those factors is a slight weight reduction from the current base car’s mass of 3,150 pounds. The new TT will be built around a inner structure that uses more of aluminium in the bulkheads and floorpan, and the bodyshell will use more aluminium.
    Underpinning the next TT will be Volkswagen’s MQB platform, which will make its debut at next month’s Geneva show under the sheetmetal of the new Audi A3.
    Styling will be more technical according to sources. Also, details like larger fender flares, stronger shoulder lines and the latest version of Audi’s large corporate grille will be featured.
    The current engine lineup of of turbocharged four and five-cylinder engines are expected to return with more power, while front- and all-wheel-drive will continue to be offered.
    The next TT will arrive sometime in 2014, with the droptop following a year later.
    Source: Autocar

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    January 30, 2012
    Audi has a bit of a problem on their hands. The German automaker is in the middle of launching new hybrid vehicles, the technology loved by Americans - but is also introducing a range of diesel powered vehicles, which are actually more efficient.
    Rather than begin changing the mind of American buyers that diesels make more sense than hybrids, Audi is changing course and altering their green plans; making hybrids the green option and diesel the performance option. The move has caused Audi to make decisions on models will and will not come to the U.S..
    For example, Audi has shelved the 2.0L diesel option for the U.S. Q5 due to the option being 3% more efficient than the hybrid option. Instead, Audi will the 3.0L diesel for the Q5.
    Its also why Audi decided to shelve the hybrid A8 for the U.S. The diesel A8 which has been confirmed for the U.S. gets better fuel economy than the hybrid, 39.2 vs. 36.8.
    “We therefore have decided not to do the hybrid in the A8 for the U.S.,” said Audi of America President Johan de Nysschen.
    de Nysschen said Audi will continue to grow their hybrid lineup for the U.S., but that “the mainstay is going to be diesel technology.”
    Source: Ward’s Auto

    William Maley

    Rumorpile: Audi A3 Sedan

    By William Maley, in Audi,

    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    January 25, 2012
    Last year at the Geneva Motor Show, Audi pulled the covers off an A3 Sedan concept, complete with an 408 HP five-cylinder engine. Well, Audi is putting forth an A3 Sedan for the U.S. minus the 408 HP engine.
    Renderings from Road & Track show the A3 carrying a family resemblance to other Audis, with a large front grill, flared out fenders, and sculpted sides. The A3 Sedan will be about six inches longer than the current A3 five-door.
    Power will come from 2.0L four-cylinder gas and diesel engines. Hybrid and electric models are expected. Base A3s will come with FWD and a six-speed manual, while quattro and 7-speed S-tronic transmission will be available.
    The A3 sedan will arrive at U.S. dealers sometime in 2013.
    Source: Road & Track

    William Maley
    Audi seems to be impressed with the BMW X6 that they are working on their own competitor.
    Volkswagen Group design chief Walter de’ Silva told Automotive News Europe that the company has signed off on Audi’s X6 rival, dubbed the Q6 by the media.
    “We will definitely launch a sportier crossover in between the Q7 and Q5,” de’ Silva said.
    De' Silva also said that Audi is still deciding whether to add a smaller SUV, likely named the Q4, to fit between the Q5 and Q3. The Q4 would compete with the upcoming BMW X4, which was confirmed by BMW’s CEO Norbert Reithofer, to come out in 2014.
    Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)

    William Maley
    With tougher CAFE standards looming, Audi has got a range of new diesel and hybrid models coming to the US. Next year, Audi has the Q5 crossover and A8 sedan coming with a diesel. However, Audi has put the A6 diesel and Hybrid versions of the A6 and A8 on delay.
    In the case of the Hybrids, Audi’s US President, Johann De Nysschen told Ward’s Auto that the pushing back the A6 and A8 Hybrids was largely done to “minimize complexity” in the lineup, since there is a Q5 Hybrid coming next year.
    As for the A6 diesel, no official reason was given. But given the mid-size premium sedan segment in the US is sluggish and most of Audi’s sales gains (14.1% so far in 2011) have been at the expense of rivals, perhaps it isn’t the time to launch another vehicle.
    De Nysschen also told Ward’s that a diesel version of the A7 for the US is possible.
    Source: Ward’s Auto

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