hp @ 5400-6500 rpm
lbs per hp
163.2 hp per liter
(from Audi Press
Release) Audi quattro concept
The 1980 Geneva Motor Show saw the debut of an automobile, whose
name went on to become more than just a symbol for a long line of
success by the manufacturer. The quattro from Audi is also the gold
standard for the combination of winning motor sport qualities with
the utmost in everyday practicality.
In celebration of the 30th anniversary of the debut of the quattro,
Audi is presenting a show car at the 2010 Paris Motor Show that
moves a futuristic interpretation of this concept into the fast
lane: the Audi quattro concept, a thoroughbred driving machine with
300 kW (408 hp), five-cylinder turbocharged engine, a lightweight
body and – of course – the latest generation of quattro permanent
The very first glimpse of the new Col de Turini White show car
awakens memories of another legendary ancestor: the 1984 Sport
quattro, a 306 hp evolutionary stage of the Audi quattro Coupé with
a shortened wheelbase. In fact, the Audi quattro concept also
represents the systematic further development of a production coupé
using high-performance technology. The foundation is provided by the
powerful Audi RS 5, one of the brand’s sportiest production vehicles
The Audi development engineers shortened the wheelbase by 150
millimeters (5.91 in) and lowered the roofline by around 40
millimeters (1.57 in) compared to the four-seat coupé on which it is
based. Like its predecessor from 1984, the 2010 show car is now also
a two-seater. The heavily modified body is made primarily of
aluminum, with the hood, the rear hatch and other components made of
The low weight of the superstructure leads to significant secondary
effects in other components of the vehicle, such as the
transmission, the chassis and the brake system. As a result, the
Audi quattro concept weighs just 1,300 kilograms (2,866.01 lb),
almost exactly the same as the Sport quattro from 1984. This once
again moves Audi, the pioneer of lightweight construction, to the
head of the pack.
The know-how and technologies of the quattro concept body will
characterize Audi’s entire production model portfolio in the future.
In another move that benefits the vehicle’s weight, the
eight-cylinder engine from the production model has been replaced
under the hood by a turbocharged, inline five-cylinder engine that
can trace its roots back to another Audi sports car – the TT RS. In
the Audi quattro concept, the longitudinal FSI turbo produces 300 kW
(408 hp) and accelerates the car from 0 to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in
only 3.9 seconds. Torque is distributed as needed via a six-speed
The Audi quattro concept uses the latest evolutionary stage of the
quattro permanent all-wheel drive system to deliver its power to the
road. The key innovation, the crown-gear center differential, is
compact, lightweight, and can vary the distribution of power between
the front and rear axles over a broad range, enabling the quattro
drive system to react within milliseconds to coax the maximum of fun
and safety out of every last bit of torque.
powerful: The appearance of the Audi quattro concept makes no secret
of its potential. Although the genes of the elegant Audi A5 and RS 5
Coupés are impossible to overlook, the appearance of the show car is
far more aggressive and extroverted. Even the obvious differences
between the base model and the evolution are more dramatic than
between the Ur-quattro and the Sport quattro in 1984.
The concept car’s wheelbase is 150 millimeters (5.91 in) shorter
than that of the RS 5. The primary reason for this, of course, was
to enhance agility and reduce weight – form follows function.
In contrast to Sport quattro, the Audi designers also shortened the
rear overhang by a total of 200 millimeters (7.87 in) to maintain
the harmony of the basic proportions. Roof height was reduced by 40
millimeters (1.57 in) for this same reason.
With its exterior dimensions (length x width x height) of 4.28 m
(14.04 ft) x 1.86 m (6.10 ft) x 1.33 m (4.36 ft) and wheelbase of
2.60 m (8.53 ft), the Audi quattro concept fits neatly into the
sports car segment.
The low roof also reduces the height of the greenhouse and thus
lowers the vehicle’s visual center of gravity. The muscular C-pillar
is clearly an homage to the design of the Ur-quattro. As with that
model, the trademark four rings can be found at the transition to
the side of the vehicle, but in this case they are stamped into the
sheet metal. Together with the large center-locking, 20-inch wheels
in a 7-twin-spoke design, the lines make for extremely dynamic and
powerful proportions when viewed from the side.
The wheel wells in the arched fenders are prominently flared –
another quote from the design language of the Sport quattro. The
same applies to the distinctive air outlet on the right side of the
hood, which allows the five-cylinder engine to breathe more freely.
A significant feature of the front end is the stark single-frame
grille. The elimination of the chrome frame lends it a functional
and technical character. Large, upright air intakes at the corners
of the bumper underscore the performance of the power plant.
The top of the grille merges into the flat strips of the headlight
modules with their clear glass covers. All light units use
ultra-efficient LED technology. The LED elements change their
appearance between a horizontal and a vertical arrangement and thus
change the character of the front end of the vehicle depending on
the lighting function activated.
The strongly molded front skirt includes integrated carbon elements.
This lightweight, yet extremely strong material is also used for the
rear hatch and the hood, which are unpainted on the inside in order
to use the visual quality of the material as a design element. The
large spoiler integrated into the rear hatch is also made of carbon
and extends automatically as needed and can be adjusted for maximum
The interior of the
coupé is reduced and clean. The dashboard is very slender and seems
to float over the separate center console. Shortening the wheelbase
meant losing the rear seat of the RS 5 on which it is based. In its
place is a shelf for helmets or luggage. Awaiting the two occupants
are filigree bucket seats, during whose development the issue of
lightweight design played a central role. They weigh only 18
kilograms (39.68 lb) each – a weight advantage of roughly 40 percent
versus a conventional production seat. The seats are equipped with
either three- or four-point belts.
Awaiting the driver is a clearly organized workplace that exudes
quality from its carbon surfaces and upholstered leather inlays. The
color scheme with satin black for the carbon elements and rally
beige for all of the leather areas offsets the various functional
units from one another and emphasizes the handcrafted character of
The classic driver orientation (“wrap-around architecture” in the
designer jargon) of the cockpit is typical Audi. The control unit
for the MMI touch system and the shift lever for the six-speed
transmission are located on the extremely slender center console.
The instrument cluster is completely digital. The large,
three-dimensional visor-like display contains all of the information
required by the driver and thus also replaces the classic MMI
central display. The clear graphics, the stark black-and-white
contrast and the subtle red highlights are precise and modernly
interpreted – an indicator instrument for a driving machine, with no
superfluous touches. The driver has the choice between an everyday
mode, which combines the indication of the speed and engine revs
with the content of the MMI, and racing mode, whose graphics revisit
and refine the digital instrument of the Ur-quattro from the 1980s.
The driver will find another reminder of the Ur-quattro's cockpit on
the sides of the cockpit cowl: On both the right and left sides are
four flat buttons. The ones on the left control the stopwatch
function in racing mode, and the ones on the right are for the menu
of the MMI system.
Entertainment is offered
not just under the hood, but also in the form of digital media. A
customizable web radio can use the driver’s cellular phone to
connect to digital radio stations all over the world, if desired,
for a sheer endless array of genres and musical styles. Playback of
the driver’s own files and playlists is also supported.
Communication also benefits from access to corresponding online
services. Whether the online address book or the driver’s own
cellular phone, the MMI combines all data into a single view.
Contacts are always available wherever the user happens to be.
To pay proper respect to the Ur-quattro as the winner of numerous
rally world championships, a so-called “prayer book” – the classic
rally copilot's track description – can be displayed in racing mode.
It provides precise information about the route ahead for an
authentic rally feeling – even if a copilot is not available.
A true sports car is
always a light car, and the Audi quattro concept shines in this
discipline as well.
The key factors are the choice of material and the design. Rather
than mostly steel as in the Audi RS 5, the body comprises
lightweight aluminum components assembled using Audi Space Frame ASF
technology. Extruded sections, die-castings and aluminum sheets form
an impact-resistant structure of exceptional strength. The hood and
the rear hatch with its integrated, moveable spoiler, plus the
bumpers and numerous aerodynamic components are made of even lighter
and high-strength carbon.
The body-in-white of the coupé weighs just 159 kilograms (350.53
lb); it would be nearly 50 percent heavier if made entirely of
The low weight of the superstructure leads to significant secondary
effects regarding size and weight in other components of the
vehicle, such as the transmission, the chassis and the brake system.
All together the Audi quattro concept tips the scales at just 1,300
kilograms (2,866.01 lb), which is roughly 200 kilograms (440.92 lb)
lighter than even the comparably sized Audi TT RS, whose body is
also largely made of aluminum.
The power-to-weight ratio of 4.3 kilograms (9.48 lb) per hp already
says a lot about the car’s dynamic potential. It is on par with that
of the 525 hp Audi R8 V10, a veritable supercar. The quattro concept
also has a much better power-to-weight ratio than its Sport quattro
predecessor. Although the Sport quattro weighed the same, the
production version of its five-cylinder engine only developed 306
Engines and transmissions
The allure of the five-cylinder
five-cylinder gasoline engines enjoy a long tradition at Audi,
powering cars like the Ur-quattro to the head of the pack. Audi
resurrected this line back to life in 2009 with the 340 hp,
turbocharged FSI engine in the TT RS. The further developed engine
in the Audi quattro concept extracts even more potential from this
new, state-of-the-art five-cylinder foundation.
Numerous tweaks resulted in a substantial power increase to 408 hp,
and its 480 Newton meters (354.03 lb-ft) of torque also leave the
base version far behind.
Its basic concept makes an Audi five-cylinder an unusual engine. It
has a firing interval of 144 degrees and a firing order of
1-2-4-5-3, alternately between directly adjacent cylinders and
cylinders that are far apart.
This produces the distinctive rhythm and musical sound, which are
also the result of the intake and exhaust geometry. A specially
designed torsional vibration damper at the front end of the
crankshaft compensates for the free moments of the engine.
Turbocharged gasoline engines are a traditional Audi domain, and the
five-cylinder turbo in the Audi quattro concept is also a
high-performance engine. Displacing 2,480 cubic centimeters, it
produces 300 kW (408 hp) between 5,400 and 6,500 rpm. Peak torque of
480 Nm (354.03 lb ft) is already available at 1,600 and remains
constant through 5,300 rpm. The powerful unit accelerates the Audi
quattro concept from 0 to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in just 3.9 seconds.
The 2.5 liter TFSI is extremely compact. Its cylinder spacing
measures 88 millimeters (3.46 in); the external main bearings were
moved inside. Only 494 millimeters (19.45 in) long, the long-stroke
engine (bore x stroke 82.5 x 92.8 millimeters [3.25 x 3.65 in]) is
suitable not only for transverse installation in the TT RS, but also
for longitudinal installation in the emphatically short front end of
the Audi quattro concept.
Its low weight of only 183 kilograms (403.45 lb) is also a record.
It helps keep the total weight of the show car low and also offers
significant advantages for the distribution of axle loads and thus
for the car’s handling.
The 408-hp five-cylinder engine is surprisingly frugal, requiring an
average of just 8.5 liters/100 km (27.67 US mpg). Its high
efficiency can be attributed to the combination of FSI direct fuel
injection and turbocharging, two Audi core technologies. This TFSI
pairing harmonizes perfectly in motorsports, the world’s most
demanding test lab: It has powered the R8 race car to five victories
in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and 63 victories in 80 other races.
The successful quattro principle
In the Audi quattro
concept, Audi uses the latest evolutionary stage of its permanent
all-wheel drive system for longitudinal engines – the quattro drive
with self-locking crown-gear center differential and torque
vectoring. 30 years after the debut of the first quattro at the
Geneva Motor Show in 1980, Audi has once again expanded its lead
over the competition.
Inside the new center differential are two rotating crown gears that
owe their name to the crown-like design of their teeth. The front
crown gear drives the output shaft to the front differential, the
rear crown gear the propshaft to the rear axle. The connection here
is provided by an ambitious construction. The new drivetrain design
is roughly 3 kilograms (6.61 lb) lighter than the previous one.
The crown gears mesh with four rotatable pinion gears. They are
arranged at right angles to each other and are driven by the
differential’s housing, i.e. by the transmission output shaft.
Under normal driving conditions, the two crown gears rotate at the
same speed as the housing. Because of their special geometry, they
have specifically unequal lever effects. Normally 60 percent of the
engine torque goes to the rear differential and 40 percent to the
If the torques change because one axle loses grip, different speeds
and axial forces occur inside the differential and the integrated
plate packages are pressed together. The resulting self-locking
effect now diverts the majority of the torque to the axle with the
better traction; up to 85 percent can flow to the back. In the
opposite scenario – if the rear axle has less traction – the same
happens in reverse; now up to 70 percent of the torque is diverted
to the front axle.
With this extremely broad torque distribution range, the crown-gear
center differential surpasses its predecessors – grip becomes even
better. Forces are redistributed without any time lag and absolutely
consistently. The mechanical operating principle guarantees maximum
efficiency and immediate response. Other strong points of the
crown-gear differential are its compactness and low weight – at 4.8
kilograms (10.58 lb) it is roughly two kilograms (4.41 lb) lighter
than the previous unit.
Like on rails: quattro with sport
As a complement to the
new quattro drivetrain, the Audi quattro concept also features the
sport differential, which actively distributes torque between the
rear wheels. When turning into or accelerating in a curve, the
majority of the torque flows to the outside wheel and pushes the
vehicle into the curve, nipping the tendency to oversteer or
understeer in the bud.
The sport differential is a state-of-the-art rear differential. A
superposition gear comprising two sun gears and an internal gear was
mounted on the left and the right of a conventional rear
differential. It turns 10 percent faster than the drive shaft.
A multi-plate clutch in an oil bath and operated by an
electrohydraulic actuator provides the power connection between the
shaft and the superposition gear. When the clutch closes, it
steplessly imposes the higher speed of the superposition stage on
the outside wheel. The additional torque required in order to rotate
faster is drawn away from the inside wheel via the differential. In
this way nearly all of the torque can be directed to one wheel. The
maximum difference between the wheels is 1,800 Nm (1,327.61 lb-ft).
The high-performance Audi quattro concept dazzles with extreme
driving dynamics. It reacts without hesitation, almost reflexively.
Its handling is uncompromisingly precise; its stability guarantees
maximum driving safety. The steering connects the driver with the
road to provide sensitive, finely differentiated feedback.
The wide tracked chassis is rigorously tuned for performance. All of
the key suspension components are made of aluminum, thus reducing
the unsprung masses. The springs and dampers of the track-controlled
trapezoidal link rear suspension are separated to improve response
behavior. The links are mounted on a steel subframe on elastic
bearings. The five-link front suspension processes the longitudinal
and lateral forces separately. The rigid aluminum frame to which it
is linked makes the front end extremely rigid.
Up front are anthracite gray, drilled carbon fiber-ceramic discs.
They are gripped by red-anodized, six-piston fixed calipers. The
ceramic discs are practically fade-free, extremely robust, powerful
and durable. Furthermore, they are four kilograms (8.82 lb) lighter
than steel discs despite their size.
The Audi quattro concept rolls on large cast aluminum wheels in
seven twin-spoke design. The 9J x 20 wheels are shod with 275/30
tires. Like the Audi R8 LMS GT race car, the wheels of the Audi
quattro concept have a central locking mechanism for fast changes.